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  CSPAN    Washington This Week    News/Business.  

    April 21, 2013
    2:00 - 6:00pm EDT  

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on some of these technologies are now to transform the experience of mail and shipping. we are pursuing avenues of product of the element today that are not restricted by existing law, but we are also seeking additional flexibility in other promising areas. the postal service provides a delivery platform for the $800 billion mailing industry that employs 8 million people. it is a big industry, and the way to keep that platform strong is to innovate in ways that improve the experience of delivery and the experience that people have with their mail. having the flexibility to create new products and pursue business opportunities is an important way to keep postal service and the milling industry in total healthy. and i hope everyone is as optimistic as i am that we can
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get the flexibility through law to make this happen. as i look out to the future, there is an lot to build on. marketing mail or direct mail it is rebounding nicely. we went through a rough spot there with the recession, and despite all the ways that people change in terms of communicating and selling products, marketing mail continues to garner roughly 12% of the total spent in marketing in this united states. it has been consistent for 30 years, and that is because marketing milk provides such a strong return on investment. i have no doubt it will continue to be as strong and a growing part of our business. the largest and most profitable part of the mail is first-class mail. that is what pays the bills. have we seen a decline in the first-class mail? yes, we have. people pay bills online, it is free, and this is awfully hard
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to compete with free. there's another part of that story that has to do with first-class mail that businesses sent to their customers. it is down a little bit, but that also includes a substantial drop that we experience with the recession in 2008 and 2009, and in a fairly weak economy since then did that says people about you hard correspondence they receive from businesses. they want that information in hard copy and they are resisting the idea of going totally digital. we have heard anecdotally a lot of people that did do that and either missed a payment and they have said start those bills back up again. do not write the obituary for first-class mail. it delivers a lot of value for the sender and receiver, and it accounts for $28 billion worth of revenue for the postal service today, and i guarantee it will be around for a long while.
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the most promising part of our business in terms of growth is package delivery, which is up more than 14% over last year's. we have created much of a credit by innovating and marketing new offerings, and we are benefiting from the big rise in e-commerce. andway people use the mail deliver service is changing it and is an exciting, and these changes will create opportunities for growth for the postal service and drop the entire mailing industry. the postal service is a tremendous organization, with the exceptionally dedicated workforce. our people do a tremendous job day in and day after you saw it this week with the ricin threat. they do an excellent job. the postal service plays an indispensable role in the american colonies. that has a business model is broken. the good news is we can fix
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what is broken. it just requires we set aside some outdated missions and views of this organization. it also requires that kneepad ask another question about one kind of service is best for america? we cannot stick with our current charter, so we have to create a new one. and we have to be bold, because the scale of our problem is pretty large. in the past year the postal service recorded a financial loss of $15.9 billion. included in there is an $11 billion default on payments to the u.s. treasurer, and we have used up all our borrowing authority. last year we only had four days of cash on hand which means we came in pretty close to not be able to pay our bills. the postal service cannot continue to limp along in such a week and financial stake. it is unfair to the businesses that support us. we need to provide customers who comprise every part of the
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american economy with the predictability and confidence that they need while they are investing in the mail, and as we to do that is for congress to help us fix this broken business model, the sooner the better. they're asking congress to give the postal service the authority and flexibility to close what could be a $20 billion budget gap by the year 2017. we can achieve this if the postal service can get ahead of the curve and be profitable for years to come. it can be done without being a burden to the american taxpayers. all it requires is flexibility and a few key areas -- the ability to determine our own delivery frequency got the ability to develop and price products quickly, the ability to control our health care and retirement costs, the ability to switch to a defined contribution retirement system
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for newly hired employees come a streamlined governance model, and more flexibility in the way we leverage our workforce. i am encouraged that congress is working on legislation to address these issues. i am optimistic that we will gain these important areas of flexibility, and if we make these changes, i am confident the postal service will better serve the american public and drive growth in the american economy into the future. we are on a responsible, comment essence path to greater deposal service that can adapt to a changing world. we just require the authority to make it happen. thank you very much. [applause] >> you said you are optimistic about congressional action this year. what makes you optimistic?
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>> there is a couple things, number one, if you think about what has happened over the past few years, there has been a lot more attention to this issue i think from an industry perspective. everybody has brought that issue from a postal service standpoint, between our initial five-year plan last year, and our communications there from what the congress hears from our employee unions, customers. people know we have to fix this issue. i was encouraged by the hearing in house. there was a lot of discussion afterwards of both sides saying we need to fix this and we need to move. andawmakers from the house senate said they will meet this week to begin discussions on hashing out a bill. what have you heard about meetings and progress on putting a bill in writing? >> we are waiting to hear the outcome of any meetings that happen. unfortunatelyngs
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this week that has caused a little bit of destruction has been what is going on with the ricin threats and has been disruptive, especially on the senate side. we're waiting to hear. the leaders in both the house and senate and both parties have expressed to us their desire to move on this issue. wellhe thing that speaks is the fact that chairman carper's hearing a month and a half ago, but chairman issa and representative cummings came in and testified they want to move ahead. >> paint a picture of what happens if congress does not pass postal reform legislation this year. >> well, our board has been concerned with that. that is what we've taken the actions we have taken. let's begin a time frame so you understand a lot of the thinking behind that. last fall, we thought after the lame-duck -- before the lame- duck session began, that we would have an opportunity to see legislation that looked encouraging, and at the last
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moment things did not get done. our board is concerned, as i mentioned, about liquidity. last year we came close to not paying bills. four days' of cash, not a good idea for some with the pace as many businesses like we do. canboard said see if we speed things up. we came back with recommendations. a couple of them you know about. and dancing the consolidations and the move from six-day to five-day delivery the intent was to make sure we do what we have in our control and be responsible around keeping the liquidity in the organization. after the decision of a couple weeks ago that congress made to change the c.r. and led us to make the five-day move, the board said it violated pricing,
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are there things we can do there? reach out to the associations and see if we can do things there. we have to keep every option open. what we would much rather do is get this legislation moving now because time is money. >> recently senator carper set for august is the goal for passing postal reform, congressman issa said the end of the year. what are you doing to regroup your strategy to make the move faster? >> again, it would be our hope that it would be done in august. i know as they talk of maybe they can get everybody on a time like to get it moved up that much quicker. our fear is everything congress deals with, you never know what's of the comes up that ties ever been up over there with a lot more attention. from our perspective, based on finances and the fact quicker we move on these, the better, which would like to see it move as quickly as possible. >> you said you did not want or
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need a bailout, but is the postal service headed for a bailout if you do not want one? >> let me talk about bailout. i think that the worst thing we could ever do as an industry is let that happen. i also think within this industry i would encourage you to read the five-year plan, encourage you to provide feedback, but that five-year plan says that everybody puts a little sacrifice in, and "a little" is the word. if we did not end up in a situation where we put that little sacrifice and, i will tell you eventually we will be sorry for that. and i do not see there is a big case in the american public -- we do not see that in the polls -- when we ask a question, would you support a bailout to maintain six-day delivery? 90% said no, they do not want to do that. after the pushback around the auto industry and the banking industry and the insurance
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industry, there's not very much of an appetite, and in a different way, think about what is happening with those bailouts. general motors lost about four different divisions coming out of there, so they had to make substantial changes to come out much smaller, much leaner in order to close the gap going for. bailing out or hoping for a bailout or hoping somebody will step in is not a good strategy. as an industry, we need to step up and fix this problem ourselves. >> if there were a bailout, you would need to legislation later to restructure, right? >> if there were a bailout -- all bets are off at that point. if you think about how poorly -- and most people in this room did not work in the postal service pre-1970, it was very undependable, and if you think about it, the american taxpayer has a lot of options they did
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not have back then, and the worst thing we could do is to hurt from a pricing perspective people who use the mail for their products, heard from a service perfective, erratic service. we have to address some service issues like saturday delivery issues, but if you are hit and miss on a service perspective and you chase people out of the male, it will only end up hurting this entire industry. i will encourage us to step up as an industry, read that five- year plan, give us feedback, but we need to push ahead as quickly as possible and get this legislation down at the same time. >> last time you pushed successfully for postal for form, you ended up with a prefunding mandate that is part of what you're looking to change now. are you sure a measure that would be passed this year that
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congress would be favorable to what you want to do? >> let me say something about the prefunding. i think we are responsible, for our health care. there is no way in the world. it is irresponsible for people to be standing there saying we should not have to pre fund. nobody else does it. that is like when you were a kid nobody else does their homework so i should not have to. if we expect employees to get benefits, which are responsible to pay for that. what we have to do is figure out the best way to do it. our own health care plan, this just came up the other day at the testimony and he said we could support a health care that was managed or was operated three fdhdp, and i am fine with that as long as it reaches a better plan with lower-cost, for retirees, and the elimination of the prefunding going forward. that is a critical issue.
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that said, when the refunding was passed 2006, it was a different postal service. let's do the math trick if you go back to 2003 when prefunding for started to be discussed, and a lot of other situations that ended up in that bill, we delivered in 2003 51 billion pieces of first-class mail. there are very few people in this room who can see clearly into the future to see exactly what is going happen. 10 if they would have no years ago what they know today, it might of been different. today we will deliver 21 billion. if you take that 30-billion piece difference at a 46-cent rate, you are looking at almost $14 billion in revenue that has evaporated over that time frame. thell say to you in 2006, congress passed a law thinking they were doing the right thing. the time frame, the burden, the
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10-a burden, that was tough, but even at that time, if you think about the fact that if we had not lost a substantial volume we lost with electronic diversion and the recession, we would have been a lot closer to being able to make those payments. our employees have done a tremendous job making up the difference from the bottom we have lost. thekey thing is this -- on legislation, we have been very involved. the team has done an excellent job, and all the individuals, on the leadership team, have done an excellent job shepherding this five-year plan. if we can give the five-year plan, any scenarios. where looking at things now and trying to look ahead, and that is why we propose the defined contribution retirement systems because we know that will help reduce costs and provide much more clear the going on.
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the key thing is no one is trying to push what we have in the five-year plan, and we will have a successful postal service for the long term. >> several questions on ricin letts. testss the latest on the of the substance? what do we know that might be new on that? >> i will tell you what i know pretty much that i am allowed to say. the ricin was mailed by somebody in mississippi known from what we understand, the way it came to this system, our best information right now is it is in a format that is kind of roughly broken up. it is not something that either came out of the envelope or
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something that came out in any other way. as soon as we found out about it, and i was irritated because we did not find out until after long after it started rolling -- reached out to the medical people, the unions, employees, and the person has been apprehended. we did not know if anything else is in the system in terms of any other letters. and we have to make sure that we will go back on any recommendations we get from the cdc or anybody else in that area as far as the next steps we might have to take, we will take those. >> how was it detected? was it sums machine that automatically detected the dangerous options put was a visual? >> it was detected over in the mailroom of the senate, and what happened is they do the opening of sight, and somebody said, what is this? i am sure i did not see what was on the notes or anything. a lot of time this people write this stuff in.
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>> have any postal workers been exposed or workers in congress -- are you concerned for the safety of them? >> there are two things you have to be careful of. one is installation if it is finely ground, and we do not think from every indication there's any concern there. or ingestion, and nobody has eaten any of it. what you have to do is just make sure he can account for everybody, and that is what we have done. we have gone back to the plants where we think the mail may have come from, and the opening site had done -- that way if they had to get to the doctor they could. >> a questioner say i am a regular person. does the postal service screen my mail for rice and? >> no.
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>> going back the legislation, a questioner talks about the losses over the past several fiscal years that are affordable to the prefunding requirement and says what have you not been more vocal in making the magnitude of the loss attributable to that part of public knowledge, and are you focusing more on congress changing that? >> bar none is the loss of volume, period, !. this industry is facing the same issues as the many people sitting up at the dais in the newspaper industry. au have technology changed substitution, competition. people pay bills online. when you lose 30 billion pieces of mail, that is what is continuing to affect this organization. it will continue. as you have options to go electronically with advertising
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mail or electronically with first-class bill present and statements which is a very scary thought for us, that is why we have to keep the price right and the service level where they are coming at is a major threat. the refunding issues are soluble 100% by managing our own health care, and it is not managed by people in the postal service. we compete is like any other person in this room. there are people in this room who are enjoying very good health plans because your companies or the groups that you belong to have competed in. yet the benefits, and you are able to adjust things going into the future. the key for the health care, we do not want to warn away from our responsibilities. wewant to pay exactly what should pay. if the postal service is paid for medicare, where the second largest insurer in the united states, and it is paid for by
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our employees and by your postage rates. it is irresponsible for me to say we should not make people go on medicare. every other company does. that is what we should do. we should have a system set up that if a person is on medicare they're not carrying a fully- loaded federal health care system which would be today. there is no wraparound plants in the federal system. that is what we need to chase this, ok? that is what the federal system should be changed, but just the postal service, so you can actually pay for what you should be paying for. our retirees will save a ton of money with the plan because instead of having to pay for a portion of a $12,000 plan, it will pay for a portion of a $5,000 or $6,000 plan. if you take that over the course of 500,000 retirees, that adds up to a lot of money. that issue is fixable. when is not fixable is that at the pain bills online is free. we will lose another $5 billion worth of single-piece mail, and
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cannot stop that. that is what we have said instead of letting us out of this responsibility, let us take the responsibility and do it in a responsible way, on our own plan to downsize the structure, is on packages, set up health care retirement plans for people in the future that are more affordable, and focus on those types of things to build a strong postal service. >> questioner says at some postal reform legislation, i would add, or if you get reform, do you plan on making current first class delivery standards, or do you had to change them? >> absent postal reform, you will see a grown man cry. [laughter] as we made the changes, our employees have done a tremendous job. our service measurements for commercial first-class mail, standard mail, periodicals, is
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at an all-time high. people are doing a great job. where consolidating because we have all kinds of excess capacity. the problem that you have in a shrinking world, whether it is a shrinking volume or shrinking revenue or a whenever, you come down to it two choices, ok? if you are a customer, which was is shrink infrastructure or raise prices. we do not want to do that. we would much rather keep the price is very predictable so you can keep your business predictable, and we keep this revenue stream at the $65 billion where we are. if you are an employee, the trusses are shrinking its fisher or eventually shrink wages. it is that basic. there is no other out in any of this. that is what we have been so adamant about laying out a plan that is fair, that it does not
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hurt anybody in ordinarily, that it tries to get ahead of the curve so it does not hurt employees, the customers, and get that thing down. that is critical. that is why to talk of not getting postal legislation through is something we should not entertain as an industry. we have an opportunity to get this thing fixed, and as an industry we need to get this thing fixed. that the questioner asks after restructuring, can you guarantee to continue universal service for folks in montana and alaska, and other far-flung places like that? >> absolutely, positively. people have said things, but let me say this, and i will sit and some people might take this as an insult. there are people who say things with no responsibility for what they say or the responsibility to make things happen. whenever i say i am responsible for making happen. in a five-day world, we will
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continue to provide universal service. the reason why we changed to a post-plant have a format is we can provide universal service. people said i need to be able to get to my post office and get my mail and i would like to be able to get my mail without having to drive 30 or 40 miles. i am not worried about saturday. i'm worried about getting to my mail. that is the thing. universal service is our mandate. we will uphold can meet that mandate. the key thing is we have got to do it in an affordable way, because if you let that go, there were not be any mail and the system. >> about the $2 billion savings estimate for ending saturday delivery. how did you calculate that number? them on a daily basis, if you take the actual delivery days and processing days we have in the postal service, every day is worth about $4.5 billion. that is what we spend, and so
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what we did is you go through, and we have put numbers against that work. as an example, we think on a daily basis come from a percentage of hours of delivery, we use 16.7 hours. from a rural perspective, we can afford 10% based on the with the contract is structured, which would carry forward that additional 6.5% on either friday or monday or through the week. from a city carrier's perspective, 12%. i think knowing our employees and knowing our managers, those are conservative numbers. those are conservative numbers. i think we can get easily to $2 billion in savings. $4.5 billion and will be spent a day to operate in that environment. when in fact you cannot go on the street with the exception of the package delivery, which will be done with dynamic routing, with a lower-cost
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employee, whether in the rural craft or city craft and allow us to provide that service at a lower cost. that is all money that can come out of the system. if calculated in what we think is the revenue loss, and we have talked to customers to validate that. we are terms of that. that we clear something up. people say it is only $2 billion out of $20 billion. if we had it this year we would break even. this year we will lose $1.7 billion on the operating line. as revenue, costs, with the exception of a worker's comp costs and prefunding. we would make money if we made the six to five move at the beginning of this year. what happens with a $20 billion of that gap exists when you do nothing over a five-year period, and with inflation that
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continues to grow. when people say it is only 10% of the cost differential, it is not, it would make up the entire loss this year. >> the fedex contract is up soon. where do you see going with contract next? >> we will award a contract to an air carrier within the next two weeks. it would have been earlier, but with the decision with the six to five, we had to make sure we crossed the t's and dotted the i's with the competitors. the questioners as you committed with senator schumer to keep the buffalo center open until 2015. does this mean there will be no large scale transfer -- depends ont all
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whether i enter this question as to whether i get a phone call this afternoon. thesework through consolidations, what we have been trying to figure -- she will be shooting in glances at me. we deliver 35% of all first- class mail in one day. that's a bargain for 46 cents, i think. we do it very consistently. the one thing we have been worried about is not putting a lot of that over i at risk. we made big changes and we are ok with that. buffalo starts to bend at the curve and we've got to make sure we will work through that. what happened in that industry, especially the first class isustry, that whole world
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consolidated. we get phone bills from at&t in four locations. verizon, three or four locations. when the mail is not drop in these plants, you are left to figure out why you get at of the blue mail box and how deep the costs out and maintain service while it shrinks? it's a tricky thing that affects things like buffalo and all of these other places where we are trying to work through. here is the key thing. we have reduced the workforce in this organization by 310,000 career people. we've reduced more of a workforce that exists in any other company except wal-mart. that's how much has been reduced. guess how many have been laid off? 0. we've been careful and conscientious about. when people say that there will
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be massive layoffs, that is b.s. i come from a city where we lost a hundred thousand dollars and have in never recovered. if you drive up and down the rivers and towns, you will find a vacant main street because once the mills went down, everything else went with it. i will not allow that to happen in this organization. there are ways to shrink and not hurt people when you do it. >> the post office employees and spirit have no american of how the post office always gets there. how can we get that spirit back? >> at an issue. our people do a tremendous job.
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wheat better be employed it. feel that they do have good jobs. our employees have a job that has at check every two weeks. they hear all of talk that they are going to be laid off. that is why it is critical to get this stuff behind us. comfortable,l especially big first-class mail , when are you going to run out of money? we don't want our customers nervous and the faster you get
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this, the faster everyone will be feeling good about growing this industry. fromw do you move providing a service to provide a business and selling consumers on wanting to buy more of the products?
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-- that would like to remind you of our upcoming speakers. we will present the gerald ford journalism awards. second, i would like to present
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our guests with the latest in a series of national press club coffee mugs. [laughter] the chief spokesman of the postal service. tell us about you and the mail. do you pay your bills with checks? do you get your magazines on paper or have you changed a lot of those things? >> i'm an absolute positive biggest fan of the mail. and stamps. eight or ninee different kinds of stamps in the door, and depending on what i send out, i will use different stamps. i pay all my bills through the mail and get all my statement through the mail and get all my messages from nonprofit in the and my wife -- this is no
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fib. she'd get at least 30 magazines a month in the mail. i probably get 10 magazines a month in the mail. we are male fanatics and it's great. it is the most direct way to reach a person and that's why i'm a big believer. donow this industry can great. thank you very much for the opportunity and thank you for seeing everyone here today. thank you. [applause] >> on monday, the senate judiciary hearing it holds its meeting on the gang of eight legislation. live coverage begins at 10:00 eastern on c-span. >> the museum is meant to help the visitor relive the first
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eight years of the 21st century. the museum explains the decisionmaking process i went through as president. we hope the museum inspires people to serve, to serve their community or serve their country somewhere. we did not want to be a school. tank. ed to be a do go in ahey decided to different direction with a component from which programs would emerge. >> watched the dedication ceremony of the georgia of the bush presidential library at the museum from southern methodist university in dallas, live, thursday morning on c-span at -- on c-span3.
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join us for a conversation with the first couple. >> now, a kentucky senator, rand paul talks about them control, the immigration reform, and a potential presidential run in 2016. the "christian science monitor" hosted the discussion at the st. regis hotel in washington.
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[captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2013]
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>> okay, everybody, here we go. let's see what control we can exercise. randuest today is senator ball. he attended baylor university before attending duke university and established his ophthalmology practice in bowling green, ky. he formed kentucky taxpayers united and in his first bid for elective office, he ran for the senate seat vacated by jim benning and one against the candidate and quickly founded the tea party caucus.
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boss, a group of which i may be the only member, only two times have we hadfa an december ron paul in 2011. the only other father-son team of was mitt romney and his dad, and former gov. george romney. now on to monday and mechanical matters. we are on the record, no live tweeting. c-span has agreed not to use the session for a least one hour. to ask auld like question, do the traditional thing and send me a non thready and signal and i will happily call on one and all. now that he has had to buy its cultural offer our guest the opportunity to make some comments and then move around the table. the floor is yours. >> it sounds like with all of
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these rules that we're going to create some news this morning. i don't know about that. >> we live in hope. >> as i was going round the room, i was thinking i was in a wedding of receiving line. if anybody feels compelled to send me a wedding gift, it has to be under $14 to meet the senate limit. i was told anything short of 13 hours of speaking would be fine, so i will keep my remarks concise. the question and answer would probably do as better. i'm glad to be here. i came to washington because i want to make a difference. i think our nation faces significant problems and if we aboutaddress the deficit but i become more and more convinced that we don't go gradually into problems, we could go precipitously into problems.
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i say that with reference to 2008 and the crisis, and even when things seem to be going well, there is dangerous looking -- there is dangers lurking in the economy. one is interest rates rising. i ask this question all the time to people i consider to be smart, big bankers, major capital centers of the world, can we control interest rates and keep interest rates below? is there a breaking point at which the central bank cannot keep interest rates at this point? 5%, 7% or 90% of would be catastrophic with this burden of debt. it seems to work right now, but i think there is a certain dilution, both of wealth in the stock market and an illusion of the ease at which we can manage our debt. those are my concerns and
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because of that, we have to do some long-range things. i have proposed several things -- i proposed fixing the social security problem. we're 6.5 trillion dollars short and it's an actual real problem. you simply rage -- he simply raise the age gradually and you fix it two-thirds of the social security deficit. you can fix the remaining third by means testing benefits. i thought there would be bipartisan support for that because the president has occasionally said he's for entitlement reform, but i think he's not showing much leadership on this and see is to be inching toward it. i had a meeting with him when we used to have 47 republican senators, we sat down around a table with he and the vice- president, this was probably a year-and-a-half ago, and i told him precisely that, that we should be able to get people on both sides of the equation to
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fix social security. medicare is a more difficult problem. these are the problems that drive our deficit. everybody here knows it. two-thirds of the budget is entitlements. dix'se another bill that medicare. it's more difficult. we do the same thing to medicare -- raise the age gradually over 20 years, means test of benefits, means test the premiums, everything. not fixately, that does the problem. even with raising the age, you don't fix the problem with medicare. you do have to have some market forces. it was john kerry's idea in his presidential election to put everyone in the whole country into the federal employee benefits plan. a democratics idea, it will be easy. i will just go to john kerry and say let's use this idea, not for
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the whole country, but for senior citizens. i think the public would like it if they told they were getting the same for health care plans the congress gets. it is similar to what paul ryan talks about, but he doesn't actually do it. we just give everyone the federal employee health plan. it saves a trillion dollars over 10 years and would eradicate the shortfall. since i fixedere, social security and medicare. i don't want to fix anything. we didn't get any support from democrats on this. one of the democrat's main complaints -- the main complaint of that obamacare got rid part of the federal employee
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health plan. it has to go into some kind of exchange, says they said we couldn't do it, so we are getting rid of one part of the government that works, so i will stop there and be happy to answer any questions. >> this is a larger than usual turnout and that's because you are seen as a presidential contender for 2016. what is your current state of thinking on that possibility? >> i want to be part of the national debate. whether i run or not, it's something that allows me to have a larger microphone. we will continue to travel to the early primary states. i will be in iowa and new hampshire this spring at south carolina in the summertime. we are considering it. we will make a decision before 2014. >> blast and that we will go to
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stephanie. -- the last one for me and we will go to stephanie. in your view, do the bombings in boston have any policy implications of gun-control or immigration? it's largely a mistake to talk about issues in the wake of a crisis and tragedy. the one thing that has disappointed me i think and control is a legitimate issue to debate, deciding where and how we can fix the problems of violence. i am of parent and i have three boys and i hate to see it in using people as props and politicizing people's tragedy. when i see the fathers and mothers and them testifying -- i know they're coming voluntarily and not to be part of the debate. but it is sad and i think been
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some cases, the president has used them as props and that disappoints me. the way i look at it, i would get it in the sense of the tragedy, how could we have prevented tragedy? that's why i come down for not being for any of the proposals because none of them would have addressed the tragedy. thehat is your position on prison in guantanamo bay? >> i have not voted for any of the limitations. there have been several amendments on sending people to guantanamo bay or not sending them there. i have not voted for any of the limitations. i don't know that i have a great answer, to tell you the truth. there is a part of me that really does believe that even if you are captured internationally, you ought to be accused of a crime.
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people held indefinitely -- i objected strongly to holding americans there and it surprises me that they would send americans there without charge and held indefinitely. it disappoints me who the president, when he was a senator and appeared to be more a civil libertarian has saddam going to sign indefinite detention. but he says the same thing on drones -- i don't intend to use them. that's not strong enough language. he should have vetoed it and we should not have on the books a power for any president to indefinitely detained americans, send them to guantanamo bay without a trial or accusation. for americans, have really strong feelings. for others, it's difficult knowing what to do and there's a sort of spectrum. anyone accused of a crime in america gets due process without question, without exception. i think it's an absolute.
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but if you are overseas and captured shooting at us, you get zero due process of you are firing at a weapon -- if you are firing at us with a weapon. then there is a murky and between for those who we think our committee battle in the daytime ant bed sleeping in their house at night. what do you do when you capture those people? there are a lot of questions that i don't think there are easy questions but i have not come down on the position of closing guantanamo bay. after your primary, most of the calls a i was getting telling me how terrible you were were from republicans in kentucky. they were loyal to senator mcconnell and there was a rift between you and the senator that you could read the derby with. how much -- how hard are you
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going to work for him to get reelected? >> i have endorsed him, have us and iney for it, will try to see him reelected. >> how do you view him? this statement for? is he someone you are learning from? is he somebody you are not on the same page with? ferro is a mentor. recall people a mentor, that overstates things. we are colleagues, i respect him, he has a lot of knowledge of that sad and we were just down in kentucky working on freedom to fish, keeping the federal government out of our fishing rights next to the dam. we interact on a lot of things and to tell you the truth, but i would say about senator mcconnell is i don't think he ever personally dislike me.
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people work against each other cpans, particularly op who have been involved in politics for a long time don't take it very personally. the one thing he did which was a significant thing for me and the party was he called us three months before the primary and said i want you to sign a promise to come to view the rally three days after the election. that was a stroke of genius because that wasn't the establishment against the upstart. everybody showed up. both of my opponents showed up and it was a good day. it was a smart thing on his point. i think he did not know at that point. polls had shifted. we were doing pretty well in the polls at that point. some might have thought i would not sign the pledge, but i did. i wanted there to be no question
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i was supporting the republican nominee. i said i was going to support the nominee once might that acknowledged that. >> i want to salute you for being the first person in memory . rack mcconnell and thoreau what president of the other party do you most admire and why? >> probably grover cleveland. why him? >> we have lots of rules here. >> i have to answer his question? lifetime, a democrat. was president when i was 6 months old. 63 -- i'm six
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months old, it would be from kennedy on forward. not an lbj fan, definitely. i think he was a preacher of something -- out of washington, there are a lot of things are bad to come out of washington and even though he's from texas, i wasn't too happy with lbj. then you have jimmy carter, who i think is the best ex- president we have ever had. a lot of people have said that. think thelinton, i only one some conservatives 0.2 conservatives point to would be kennedy growing the economy and reducing the increasingt and revenue even though he cut rates.
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i would probably say kennedy and i think kennedy captured the american imagination. i think falsely sometimes because i think the media gave him a pass. nowadays, i don't think that what happened to either side. kennedy. d say >> you spoke at howard university last week. how do you think your message was received there and do you plan on doing any more out reached like that? if so, what would you do differently? >> about three days later, i spoke to summons college, which is a historic leap black college in kentucky. i thought my reception was much better than what was from the left-wing media. howard was a very fair. i have never met heard before but i've always been a fan.
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thatember when he was "recent close "magazine him writing about trying to we have a bill -- on mandatory minimums that i'm working on and we may i think it was good. one young man samba i work and -- said i work for a pro-obama program. police said he worked for the president. for theid he worked president. that is a difficult thing.
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people, i waslasted for being out of touch. statistics are not great. hoover may have gotten 2/3 of the american vote. the south side chicago was republican. for each you tell me the reason their patent is because of this strategy, it may have cemented the change but it happened during the great depression. the change happened among whites
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and blacks. this increase in ninth team 36 when they did this. vote was here. the have '90s term of the people voting for lbj. the strategy is after that. people write that are wrong. everybody had an opinion. that to do with the lack of
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hadomic emancipation -- it to do with the lack of economic of already done this. we will continue to do that. anybody who thinks it will be the one we will switch, thing that it was the amazing switch. if you could get a republican that occurred switch the vote, things would be topsy-turvy. of ohio to 5% voting republican to 10%, all the sudden ohio comes into play. was havingnswer
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to do with children to deal with props. you think this was a problem that needs to be dealt with? is a redaying this herring? done ifshould be something should be done at? >> that is not the issue in gun control. >> i am someone who is presenting a face to the public. i do care about those kids. i understand the grief they are going through. i do care about it. whether youabout are in bathetic. i do understand his family is. >> do think there's anything
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they ought to do by restricting access are registering guns so people can not have access? >> they found 15,000 people to be felons. they were kickedut of the system. we prosecuted 44 of them. i think it is simplistic to say which stocks 15,000 felons from getting guns. maybe they went to another dealer that was not precise. what we ought to do is make sure that the background checks we have are working. the bill made him a few other things.
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ultimately, this is the way i look at it. ofis shared by a lot americans. the shootings but sandy hook, the young man that committed the murders was not deterred by the death penalty. -- he was notd by deterred by being killed. most of these are exactly the same. that somehowk there is somehow going to fear the and registration and that it would deter them. they seem to be choosing people that are gun free zones. if i were in charge of the school district i would be lobbying to allow teachers to have a gun locked up in a guest door.
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that is the only thing that might have saved any lives. we have gun registration up there. this disease with the most significant have the most significant crime. >> what is the concept of universal registration? >> it does not go to the problem. registration does not deter these young men. it works for law-abiding citizen. 90% of crime is connected by guns that are bought illegally already. and gun shows, 1.7 were committed with guns from gun shows. worse, background checks why don't in furs regionwide only enforce what we got.
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-- why do we enforce what we got the? that is a dog and pony show. it is to show people that something bad happen. it did. i do not want to demean or lessen that. their response to its is look at me i did something. richard cohen and the washington post is not considered to be a right wing zealot on the second amendment. he wrote that the background checks will not do anything. i am curious what your opinion of abraham lincoln's legacy is. >> there is a great book called
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"forced into glory." it is a good book. same.is a great he said lincoln's and not be allowed to ride into glory on the borrowed plumage from somebody else's happens. there is some truth to that. lincoln was a great politician. i do not think he was a god. he was a politician. he came into his glory because some people greater than newlyweds. that would be the abolitionists who pushed him toward and anticipation. in the in he was a great president. be very proudg to
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of for him and for the republican party. i grew up reading all the descriptions. it was crazy. it is a lot more complicated than that. i think the abolitionists deserve more credit than they are given. >> i am sensitive to your concern that the whole thing was portrayed negatively. i do not think it was. there was the moment where you seem to be assuming that students do not know something about history. is that accurate? >> that was misreported. . simply said something
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out asking a question. i sit do you know. tos is my first time to go this historical college. people say you should know the answer. that is why i was going. we do not know the answer. the naacp was founded by republicans. it is a dumb question. republicans and nothing going to power for 20 years. iybe by going there learned something. everybody their nose. here is a good question for you. this is where i think it is unfair. take a poll. war started after 9/11 they polled americans. who said how many of you, do think attacked us. over 50% bought iraq attacked us. it is still true. -- fought iraq attacked us. it is still true.
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the africanople in american community, if you ask them if the republicans were a part of an naacp and ending jim crow, and most were republicans at one time, people do know that. i was told that. i think the vast majority of the public, at 900 has no idea that republicans helped to finfound e aa seat being -- the naacp. we need to talk about it. i'm human. i forgot his name. it was not like it was part of my speech. as a question and answer. i forgot his name. was andt i was making he was asking about the rich history of the republican
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parties. his response was, the democrats would year about econominonstop. nonstopear about it appeared in the easier for an african-american republican to go. is seen many trying to preach to people about their history. i am in a little sensitive to it. i think people the right on one side of their rights because they do not like republicans. the republicans says, it is done without really looking at the facts. >> i think they're completely wrong on the southern strategy.
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>> i wonder if we can ask your reaction to what has not been written. are you willing to endorse the pathway to citizenship? well immigration reform to help drug problem? >> the bill is pretty long. still notnight it was available. we're going to read it. that will take a while. there are a lot of details.
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i am for immigration reform. i am for finding a place for those who are in our country finding a place for them. with not that i will be anything for no roles. republicans complain against the 1986 bill. amendment that i want to be attached to the bill i think will make it stronger. it has to go through the house. the house is very conservative. to engage with people like me who are from the conservative wing of the party. orders that each year in for the reform to go forward
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there has to be a report on border security that should include the opinions of the gunners and border control. statistics onude how many are being returned to come here illegally. that report should be voted on by congress. and do not think there has been in the seriousness on the part of any administration. yeon get rid of your congressmen and women if you do not like them -- you can get rid of your congressmen are women if you do not like them. fors important
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conservatives to report the bill. and you areere undocumented, will i use to get in the same line. ne.re is a lime the bill is going to create a new line. give a certain amount of years. some of this is rhetorical. it is important to people who do not want a new pathway. this is something we will look at. we think we need go to vote your supposed to show up with their driver's license. run you do, you should be
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through the work the said database to make sure you're not here on a work visa. be immediately eligible to vote is because they have a driver's license. all of these have and exclusions for welfare. that couldot pass, be people signing up for welfare. we will see how much will be attached to it. address some of these things. you glossed over the past 50 years. how would you characterize the roles in civil rights?
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>> the go up to 1964 and you look at it, i think there were to several rights bills and a 50's. go up to 1964 and to look at it, i think there was so right build in the 50's. the southern strategy i did not mention here it i did not go there to mention the things that looks of it. it is not something t help us of solidifying the african american vote. my point is they did not cause it. you can follow up with that. some of that is fair and some as unfair. people have told me they think
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will brown act was races. -- racist. there may be some argument. i do make mistakes. that is what i meant. there is some bases and argument of some of the tax is through the years. taxes through the years. there is a perception out there. they do not like people of color, black people, and brown people. that is not true. that is the perception we have to overcome. the only way is by showing up and saying that it is not true. i want part of that to be talking about our rich history. that is an uphill battle, too.
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i got a lot of grief for the audacity of mentioning it. i think it is a rich history. i will keep trying. i do not give up easily. go to the back of the room. >> there are administration reports. the immigration and how people get legalize. they have to submit to report within six months. interested in a separate point of reaching out to hispanic communities? >> yes. i have been to the hispanic chamber of commerce. that is the beginning of what i would consider to be trying to go and talk to.
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let first ran people said you need to needmrs. smith for your vote. - smith for your vote. symbolically that is true with republicans and different ethnic groups. it sounds corny. to changeanybody their mind? i do not know. i showed up two days later and one gentleman came up and said he wants to start a facebook page of african americans for real and paul. that is only one person out of 50. paul.nd that is only one person out of 50 but it is a stars. -- start.
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i am not completely opposed to that. border security has them what conservatives are fearful of. there are some that on never vote for any immigration reform. there are a bigger block the will vote if they are insured and reassured that the border will be secure. there are some of you will not a get. i am finding a way to make it more of a way to embrace immigration reform. portion is the administration says this is our plan. then people get legalize. d.o
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do you think that is an impediment? >> of the house plan is to get a lot of bills. i disagree. on tax reform to mark out a lower the income tax. lowcan compromise on the end. sometimes you get more revenue. ourselves harder on to find a deal when it has
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100,000 moving parts. we should do things we agree on. that is why the republicans are upset with us. all this stuff will agree on will not pass. because we say it will be a sweetener for the bigger deal which we never seem to get. jamar said no. they would have been shot. it would have been great fun to see that we pass this by unanimous consent. >> if i was allowed to go back to when i was not alive, he seemed to be opposed to special interests.
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it was a time that some call it populace. up in thek this came luncheon. she is wearing it will cost the party their seats. to change course of action? >> i do not have connection for the group.
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economic decision in the future over where i will continue to do this. i cannot agree with all of them all the time. i am on the side of wanting to protect the second amendment. i do not plan on working against a republican in our primary. i do not have any plans to
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oppose any incumbent republican. >> what is next on your agenda on the drone issue? are you working to reexamine that? >> who was nice enough to come to the floor in support of the filibuster. we continue to work on a range of issues. i do not want to care stresses
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position. i think we have a chance to talk about this. the senator has talked about bringing this up. it is a real stigma began problem fo. there are people and my party who think the battlefield is everywhere in the war has no limits. i have a real problem. if you are engaged in a battlefield where fighting soldiers, we're not going to give them miranda rights. there's no due process in the battle. becomes more of a question of their eating dinner in their house.
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i would say how hard is that so will be. the war is over. think it is important to take this bet is that it is the people's power through congress. there is the debate of whether they can infringe on civil liberties here are at home. willnot think we completely derivatives.
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i would have debates over or you would go again. i think the country was almost universally united let's go to afghanistan. iso not know if the public united in going into syria. i keep saying let's ask the millions of christians in syria what they want. some christians may exempt. and nothing we have time for another question and answer.
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thank you. [captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2013] >> likely will talk about the republican agenda and the future of the republican party. our live coverage will begin at noon eastern. >> the brookings institution hold a forum on changes to medicare. will be a senior should pay more.
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>> eric holder testifies on the 2014 budget request. in includes more than $2.5 billion of funding. the also talked about the vote blocking the legislation and his actions on state marijuana initiatives. this is two hours and 15 minutes. >> welcome before the committee. thank you for appearing. i am going to hold my questions to the very tense.
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there are members that need to go to town. me suggest the bombing attacks at the boston marathon. these specialists are working nonstop to determine who carried out this barbaric act and to make sure we have no other attacks. this committee is ready to help in any way we can to help law enforcement that the make sureors and sur justice is served here is anything this committee can do we stand ready.
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i am extremely disappointed in this. it does not taken an important .olicy matter the number of employed in mayn't has fallen from 2000 -- 23,000 to 12,800 in fiscal year 2014. leadership is necessary. i want to support you. we need to see you are taking it seriously and going after in an energetic way. why can the n.c.a.a. where a different hat? n.c.a.a. wherehe a different hat -- wear a
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different hat? cannot put a man in prison for 15 years and not give them the dignity. in disappointed with your non- committal response. my suggestion is that they consider an assessment of backbreaking work being done. before last year's hearing nothing came of it. we never heard of it. we never followed it up. we're interested in a national commission. we will look at reform options.
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to hold mying breath. the committee includes language to provide the department with the flexibility to reallocate funds to address emerging needs. it has developed to allow such flexibility was still preserving congressional priorities. this was saw as an air mark. this is an earmarked.
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violates the basic process. the fallout is still being felt. yet undermined relationship with your funding committees. respect and a willingness to talk to one and other. the committee included some important language. the committee will have no choice but to close specific details of legislatively. activities become
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absolutes. this is what has come to pass. the bill and a range and your ability to read program in trencher funds. futureally hurts attorney general's that will follow it whenever that time may be. use a fairly wrote your ability of congress to address your very serious funding problems. seenhave already extraordinary measures. officers could be furloughed if not this year but
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next year for the lack of funds spent. to allow this to happen is bad judgment and poor leadership. the furloughs. i understand even though you could be facing sequestration, you are requesting more funding. approach would be to sell it to the highest bidder. i and disappointed. you indicated you would reach out to find ways to collaborate on rooting out human
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trafficking. we have discussed actions. we have seen no movement. we sent a letter. weev get an answer. there a number of cases where young women have been sexually traffic. we cannot get an answer for you. did the fact you have been reluctant to deal with the issue is very troubling. we are still waiting for a response. the reason inspector general review shared a longstanding pattern of dysfunctional, harassment. ig appointedown by you. it showed dysfunction, harassment, and demands a strong response.
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they refer this to the department for possible discipline. and expressed concern about continued policies that you cannot doubt on in partiality. i recommend an independent outside review to make the rate recommendations -- make the recommendations. of atroubled by the report 41% traveling for professional reasons. ever have second thoughts about any of the travel? to ever say i do not know that that was the best use of the taxpayer money? weird trying to work on
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priority issues. we're not able to get contraction. the last letters, not even a response. we are requesting more in budget authority. butncrease of 1.5 billion fyi 2012. this reflects some significant issues with sizable of sets. it includes 382 million to expand the law enforcement and background checks. this includes 150 million in new funding for a brought comprehensive school safety program in finding a variety of positions for law enforcement
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and others. $660 milliondes for cyber security. you're seeking $55 million for mortgage fraud. we will have questions regarding trafficking. we will also expect to ask how the efforts can enforce this at the high standards of professionalism and objectivity. we expect to hear more about the apartment and how they will address this. a like to take a minute to recognize an atf special agent
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for his commanding service. scott is returning to the headquarters. we wish him well. you are a credit to the department. we thank you very much for your service. unknown new offices and others are focused on this matter. respond to each of the criticisms that have been offered.
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not surprising that a majority party might take issue with some of the activities of a cabinet member. represent the administration's point of view in the house. there are too drastically different points of view on every subject. on yourocused appropriation request. for years tell you have done an extraordinary job. justice andnt of all the men and women under your control have done a great job in this respect of dealing with a whole range of issues. we will get into what you need.
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we could respond to each and every point. i do agree with the chairman that we need this prison issue. allah be concerned about that. i welcome me. i know that your time is important. firth i am sure you question any trip you have to make up to the hill. we appreciate the fact that you're here. i yield back. thank you for yielding this time. -- wealways seem you well
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wish you well. fiscal year 14 request is almost the 4% increase over current levels. funding for most remain flat. there is the rapidly escalating costs within our federal system. we look for to hearing from me about the impact of this flat funding. in addition, i am concerned about a number of buttressing gimmicks that undermine the integrity of your requests.
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budget is of prisons relying on the enactment of authorizing legislation. it will achieve $41 million in savings. despite the fact that this same request was rejected in the last two fiscal years. you've also continue to rely on rescissions to finance your discretionary budget including some 392 million from core law- enforcement accounts. they expressed concern with this tactic. the wisdom ofn employing gimmicks with a finding that supports our marshall's. high in may to see a request -- and making a request for u.s.
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oil. this prohibition was supported on a bipartisan basis in the fiscal year 2013 bill. this should give cause for concern. on a more personal level, i do wish to thank you for your continued interest in the drug abuse epidemic as it was called by the national center for disease control. it began a decade ago. it has emerged as the fastest- growing threats. national epidemic.
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welling in number to participate in the national prescription of drugs and use are allowing them to participate in the national drug inption of prescription of use. partnership in that regard. we're making some significant progress. we wish you well. we have a number of questions we like to raise with you. we are at the very beginning of the budget season. a lot of it is uncharted waters for you and me and us. want to work out the best answers. thank you. >> thank you.
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we appreciate your coming before the subcommittee today. it is the core mission to enforce the laws and defend the interests of the united states. i know all of us want me to have every resource you need to investigate this act of terror. this accounts for additional
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threats. for in december our nation mourned the unspeakable tragedy. 3482 americans have lost their lives due to a gun. this has no controversies universal background checks. it will provide first responders and law enforcement officers be resources to protect our community. like to thank the
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ranking members of this hearing for joining us today. thank you. today's witness will be sworn in before testifying. please rise and raise your right hand. >> do you affirm the testimony will be the truth, and nothing but the truth? record reflect that he has answered in the affirmative. your full statement will appear in the record and you can summarize as appropriate. >> good morning, chairman wolf, ranking member fattah, andthank you for the opportunity to appear before you today to highlight the president's fiscal department of justice -- and to achievements and future priorities.
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i would also like to thank you -- your continued support will be more critical than ever. i join every member of this subcommittee in expressing my deep sympathy to the victims of this cowardly terrorist act and to those who lost friends and loved ones. i want to assure you, the citizens of boston, and all americans that we are working tirelessly to determine who is responsible for this incident. to this end, have asked the full resources of the department the deployed to ensure this is investigated and make certain the individual or group that carried out this heinous act is held accountable to the full system of the law and by any means available. the department will continue to define our broader efforts and move aggressively in identifying, distracting, and
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invests getting pots by foreign terrorist organizations as well as homegrown extremists. since 2009, we have established a strong record in this regard, bringing cases at having convictions against numerous terrorist. the budget provides a critical support for a range of public safety programs that impact our saved -- our citizens daily lives. along with the comprehensive gun violence reduction plan the president renault -- the president announced in january, this will allow us to respond to the horrific mass shooting we sought and last december, in newtown, conn. by making schools more secure. just days after the tragedy at sandy hook, elementary, i met with first responders and crime scene investigators and i walked the halls where these
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unspeakable events took place. those brave men and women asked me with tears in their eyes to do everything in my power to keep such a thing from happening, i said i would not rest until i have requested changes the citizens need it had shown overwhelmingly with the one. despite my disappointment, quite frankly might frustration and anger at the filibuster that led to the failure to adopt some of these changes despite the fact a majority voted for them, i and my colleagues throughout the administration remained committed to standing with the thosees of newtown and who have lost their lives in senseless and violent acts across the country and those whose lives and futures are shattered every day. on behalf of the victims, survivors, and their families, my colleagues and i will continue to fight for common- sense reforms to keep deadly weapons out of the hands of dangerous people without
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infringing on anybody's second amendment rights. the president of its budget request will enable us to do just that. beyond these efforts, the budget request will bolster existing programs for combating violence in all of its forms, cracking down on child exploitation, sexual assault, and becoming smarter and safer on crime. it will invest an innovative programs to ensure law enforcement officers can do their jobs were safely and effectively than ever before, and provide increases to continue the fight against financial and mortgage fraud and allocate more than $250 million to address bias, intimidation, and discrimination from america's housing and lending markets for our schools, workplaces, border areas and voting booths. unfortunately, our capacity to
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build as has been negatively impacted by sequestration, which cut $3.6 billion from the department. these cuts have a detrimental effect on our employees and our support for allies across the law-enforcement community. despite our best efforts, i'm very concerned about the department's ability to keep dept. -- both this year and next -- using a limited funds, ies to transfer provided funds to the bureau of prisons to avoid furloughing correctional staff each day from a federal systems from a country. this would have created serious . fe and safety i would like to think the ranking member and members of the sub committee.
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the things we used to alleviate the sequester cuts will no longer be available to mitigate fiscal year 2014 funding shortfalls due to sequestration. these shortfalls will debt -- will jeopardize program that will affect safety of americans across the country and it will include the remarkable work at the justice department and particularly our hard-working staff every day. i look forward to working with the said committee to make sure these untenable cuts are not allowed to continue. allocate $26 billion for the justice apartment -- -- the justice department. thank you once again for the opportunity to discuss and i more than glad to answer any questions you may have. going to ask any
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questions until the very end. i live here and i would ask members to have never used a gavel but asked if you could -- >> i want to follow the chairman's lead -- i understand you have important business involving our nation, so i will yield and deal with questions at a later point. general holder, as i said before, i appreciate your work on the prescription drug abuse problem. one of the most important things that has taken place is the prescription drug monitoring nurses, where doctors,
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and those that prescribe medicine are able to chat on a statewide computer network to make sure the person they're shopping, evenr. across state lines. that has been very effective. however, two main problems. of doctorspercentage are using that system. not a real time. it's days or weeks of delay between when a prescription is registered in the system before it shows up. a person can dr. shop across a state line and unless they are connected in their home state, it never shows up.
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what can you tell us about those problems with the system? >> first, i would agree with what you said that this w estion of prescription drug abuse is a national problem. it is one we have to dedicate attention and resources to. the work you have done to raise the consciousness of this nation to that problem has been laudable and i would note the prescription drug monitoring program is named after you for good reason. have $7 million in our budget for monitoring, but in ways that i think are legitimate ones. but we have to understand our national problem can be hampered by state borders and they cannot cross the state line quite easily. we have to come up with ways we
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can make this effectively as we possibly can. tell us what you are doing to eventually get all 50 states connected into one system. >> what we are trying to do is enhance the system to track track controlled substances dispensed by pharmacies. that's why the moniker in -- that is why the monitoring component is important and we're doing all we can to ensure this national problem gets the national attention it deserves. >> i appreciate your work on it. complex, it requires a holistic approach.
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we find that most young people what the condom by accessing home medicine cabinet where you get a bottle of pills or if you went to the dentist, he says he may not need these but here's the bottle and you put it in the medicine cabinet and forget about it. find the bottle and it is prescription medicine, so it's safe. then before you know it, they are hooked and in many cases, dead. has happened so many times in my district. it's a national problem. you have been helpful and effective in shutting down most of the spill mills >> which i can spell. >> he went to work with that problem along with state officials and others and you
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have shut down most of the pill mills. the prescriptions for opiate medications in the u.s. were made in brower county, florida. you have been very effective and i appreciated very much. the other thing i want to ask about is the hydro coda on rescheduling. ydrocodone. the sba -- the fbi has dragged its feet. why is it important we schedule schedule #2?nto a >> if you look at the abuse you hydrophone, you can see that misery the abuse causes.
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the pervasive use for parts of thecountry, it seems to us rescheduling would be appropriate. we hope to work with our and effect that rescheduling. current classifications for these drugs, these are , and becausein they are schedule 3, there is a false sense among some patients and even doctors that these are less potent and habit forming and therefore less dangerous. , every opioid pain killer is scheduled as a
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scheduled to drug and carefully regulated. america's most of used product is missing from this schedule to list. because undert schedule no. 2, it would be required to get these painkillers except in an emergency and the prescriptions cannot be called in. get a refill to after 90 days. no automatic refill and traffickers would be subject to harsher fines and penalties. use every ounce fda to makewith the sure you can reschedule those drugs so we can stop that problem. other questions i can
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submit for the record. general, arney majority of senators did a vote for a bipartisan background check amendment that would have made a difference to our current system. unfortunately, and i'm deeply disappointed that their role -- the rule of the majority of senators cannot enforce the will of the majority. what steps can you take to improve the background checked process without the need for additional legislation and what improvements should be made to make it so that you can keep guns out of the hands of the wrong people? what's the background check is a way to keep the guns of the hands of the wrong people. i was disappointed to see something that had the support of 90% of the american people,
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the overwhelming majority of democrats, republicans, even nra members go down to defeat as defined in washington now where the majority of the senate votes for a but it's not enough. have to have a super majority because filibuster's happen as a matter of routine. is keep trying and pass the common-sense legislation, but beyond that, "with way to encourage the state to put more into the system by offering grant and making it -- er to get that kind of that kind of information into the system. usehe extent we can executive power to do that, we are prepared to do so. the president issued 23 executive orders and it was an
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attempt to maximize the use of executive power to make real the promise he and i made to the families in a new town. >> i am also deeply troubled and it is totally shocking to me thathose on the terrorist watch list do not write a flag in the system. the president have ask you revised list of factors that determine eligibility to pass a background check for the purchase of a firearm. couldyou explain how that be? >> the president has asked me to look at the categories of people who go into the database. >> it just focus on that for a minute. shouldn't we be closing that loophole? if you are on the terrorist watch list, you can still go out and buy a gun? >> , me just say there are some
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and law enforcement who are not convinced it's inappropriate thing to do and it's something i have under advisement and will take into account the concerns expressed by my law enforcement partners before a decision is made. i share the concern that you have. >> this concern has been around for a long time. thee are mistakes on terrorist watch list, but if you are being stopped and held up because you are on the watch list, you can just go off and buy a gun, can you get back to me as soon as possible on that? the president's request includes $150 million for the school safety program that will allow districts to apply for grants be a security upgrades, counselors or in some cases, armed guards. are you giving guidance to the
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district for acceptable usage of these grants? for security grew month verses personnel, could you share with us what you have in mind? of 200 we have as part groups are so that we met with during the introduction to the president paused proposals, the president and i met with a group and what was reflected is the proposal to give locale's flexibility as to how they would use this money and put a menu of options in front of them. from armed guards to psychologists and give them the ability to give what is best to those schools. we tried to put together a program that gives guidance in the sense that it lists the number of options local communities have, but is
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educational in the sense that we oftricted to the number options we are presenting. we are being flexible as well as being responsible. >> thank you and thank you, mr. chairman. mr. attorney general, you said you are examining what you could implement through executive order? i was looking at what you thought you could implement by executive order. thehere are certain things president can implement within january that he issued. i'm referring back to those. >> referring back to the
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original list, let me ask you if from the leader, the chairman has been on the problem of cyber threat. could you tell us the role the department justice plays that directs the country and federal government against cyber attacks? -- protect that country against cyber attacks? and noted a number of deficiencies over the years and the security operations center -- could you talk about some of those and what you are doing to better protect the department of justice from cyber attack? disruptingg and
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these are a priority for the department. if one looks at the cyber arena, you have people offshore to have the ability to perpetrate common fraud and beyond that, we have danger to the infrastructure and another -- other national security threats. we spend a great amount of time dealing with cyber attacks. i have a threat meeting every day and the majority of the time where there, at least one of the components we're talking about deals with a cyber issue. it is something we have to continue to evolve and the department. they changed the nature of the threat we are facing. that is a multi agency effort to deal with, but it is for us and
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the department a priority area. >> the chairman and i had a classified briefing today on cyber threats. $92 million in this year's request for an additional 50 agents at fbi? this is an area the chairman has been on for many years where it may be the chairman has been paying attention. withis a massive problem very clear vulnerabilities. this is an area we want to look at in terms of your request. >> thank you, mr. chairman. for theand thank you superb job you are doing. it is want to make the comment
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of thank you for the work the department has been doing -- that make up is one particular example that was very important. increasedn alone sales from legitimate sources from 6% to 10%. i want to raise it to issues with you today. one common to fall along with the comments -- i share your disappointment with what happened in the senate on a background check bill. it a lot and ied know you are taking action through executive order to deal with the state participation providing mental health records to make a more complete data base. the issue has got a lot of attention and there's a that not onlye these mental health records be put into the system but evidence of serious substance abuse.
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in many respects, the substance abuse history has proven a more reliable indicator that someone who gets a weapon might use it for violent crime. the requirement has been even less than a mental health side. could you share your thoughts on how you navigate? a broader issue i know you have worked on and is of great it'srn to the committee, the ever burgeoning prison population with people with health problems -- mental health problems and substance abuse problems. but the unstable trajectory -- any thoughts you like to share on that? >> the inclusion of information that deals with people letter drug abusers is a problem. the information is an indicator, potential indicator of those who might use guns and appropriately.
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this is information that should be included, but we don't want to impact people seeking treatment for their drug issues. so we have to work a way that we can deal with the problem and find the sweet spot. it is something we are wrestling with, one of the things the president asked me to look at over the time he gave me, so that is something we will be addressing. the prison population is something that is of concern. if you look at the trajectory, we see increasing numbers of people in federal prison and state prisons as well. we should ask ourselves are we putting the right people in jail for appropriate amounts of time? are we doing things with incarceration that we want to do? also to try to rehabilitate?
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we cannot jail our way of the problems we are entrusting -- there are certain people need to go to jail for long times. i sentenced people to jail for a long time here in washington d.c., but there are legitimate think we should ask ourselves whether or not the prison population we have which , we haveh as we have tried to put in the budget things to deal with incarceration so that people getting out of prisons have the opportunity to become productive members of society and increase their chances of coming back into the system. there are lots of things in the budget request that deals with this issue. the want to acknowledge
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justice reinvestment which is a areen way where people helping to rehabilitate those two release from prison and have remarkable success at reducing recidivism and creating a virtual cycle. i know your request has gone $80 million. n to it is a great new investment and we look forward to working with you on that. >> it's something that's an important part of our request because the states are doing some very interesting, evidence- based things that are proving to be useful and productive and have other states adopt those things that work.
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the justice is a real tool. isi think one big category in the degree to which we use our prisons as mental health holding facilities and to the degree we can direct the mentally ill to better treatment and better treatment facilities cost less and is much better for that may be a significant contributor to moving s. >> if you talk to the shares, the sheriff of los angeles county will tell you in terms of numbers that they are the principal holders of people with mental issues, which is clearly not an appropriate thing. >> listening to the questions impose upon you
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-- there are so many issues we could discuss. we could spend whole day here on guns. if that legislation were to come to the house, perhaps if the schedule permitted -- there are mixed opinions about whether the amendment voted down yesterday would have kept the tragedy in connecticut from taking place? immigration is a hot topic. i would love to talk to you about bp and the trial in new orleans. but i'm going to reserve my you aon and not to throw in december, the president was interviewed by barbara walters. the question was do you support
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making pots legal. the president said i would not go that far. it does make sense to focus on drug use in states where it is now illegal. since november, two states have made marijuana legal and other states have made it legal for medical use. the president says it's a tough problem but he has asked the attorney general to examine it. i want to go back to the hearing deaad last week with the thenistrator who said department continues to enforce federal drug laws regardless of state actions. marijuana continues to be an illegal drug based on federal law.
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agents under the jurisdiction of the department tojustice are continuing pursue marijuana crimes, even though certain states have legalized it. with all of the concern on both sides of gun violence, the numbers show 40,000 people last year died because of drug overdose, drug abuse. compared to 11,000 with guns. over the last decade, 400,000 people have been killed as a result of drug overdose. under the leadership of chairman in response to mr. rogers, you say we can't be hampered by safe borders.
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i'm going to ask the same question i asked the administrator -- we all love the 10th amendment, but is it a problem that we selectively try to interpret the usage of the 10th amendment? it federal government deems as a gateway drug. during testimony last week, she was talking about the children who start out with marijuana. we are not talking about someone growing something in their backyard. many of they showed drugs, most of the drug are coming here through the mexican cartels, which has to be an issue for the justice department and every mayor and governor. since the president referenced q, white is your perspective as
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the chief law enforcement officer of this country -- is this something the federal government should be concerned about? is there an added burden because of states making their own independent decisions? does it create added challenges for the men and women who work for your department? continue tonly review the marijuana legalization passed in washington and colorado. still and the process of reviewing those initiatives. to enforceinly going federal law. boardt we do across the to enforce them. in making those enforcement decisions, we take into account how you can best use the resources that we have and we make determinations about where
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the greatest harm occurs and how we can have the greatest impact. these marijuana initiatives, we have to consider whatmpact of children, their kids are negatively affected, whether there is violence connected to trafficking and use or sale of marijuana, we don't want to do anything that would enable organized crime or the cartels to somehow benefit from these initiatives. then there is the question of violence and the question of the sales and use of these drugs. >> correct me if i'm wrong. marijuana is a schedule one of
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drug as is lsd and ecstasy. maybe it is ms. categorized? i don't know. maybe it is ms. categorized? based on the research you have done so far or what you might have issued coming forward, based on your judgment as a father of three children. the president have -- a president has two kids, i have two kids. i guess is a personal question. if there were a recommendation from the attorney general to be president of the united states today, would you be in a position to say whether you legalization of marijuana in the entire nation would be a good thing or bad thing? >> one of the things that will be sharing with the president is the views i have with regard to washington and colorado initiatives.
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is president has not said he for legalization. i am not for it either, and when it comes to children, i think it's recognize in the washington and colorado initiatives that there are certain age limits beyond which the use of marijuana would not be appropriate, the same we do with alcohol. the recommendation we made will take into account what i referenced in my first message to you, the impact on the whole question of violence and organized crime, these things go into that determination and how we deploy our resources most effectively. >> out of the interest of time, i will yield back. there are so many questions that we have that we would like to visit with the attorney general
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and if he has time to come back as some of these things move, i know i would be happy to make myself available. chair, andu, mr. welcome back. i have four quick questions and perhaps the responses could be brief. been veryt, have concerned about data collection and what we are asking for in addition to the additional categories, you know the advisory policy board will be meeting to make a recommendation on several new categories and i know you have come out and support these categories, but is there any more the departments of justice can do to make sure arab the -- about the anti- haterimes?
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>> we have come out in favor of recommending to the committee sikh, anti-can do, and anti-middle eastern language be included in we have come out in favor of that. >> the reason is many people don't make those distinctions and it gets a lot of folks in trouble. we appreciate you following up on that. interesting things in the fiscal 14 budget, you have requested removal for several curiosof language around and relics. could you tell us more about your thinking around this issue? that think the language
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deals with curios and relics is not appropriate in that you can have these weapons that, though old, can still be used. iny can be quite effective crimes and cause great harm. we think it is inconsistent with the harm an old weapon can cause. i get that. in the areas of voter protection, and there have been on a lot of americans who have waited an inordinate amount of time in the last election, , one of theng time things that was going on is trying to limit -- trying to
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limit the amount of days and limiting access to polling hours in heavily minority areas like asian-americans, every other community was unfairly targeted. this runs contrary to our nation's founding principles. did you tell the subcommittee about what they're doing to stop this of these and how she can be helpful? voting will question of rights is something i've tried to make a case for. we brought successful suits against texas, south carolina, photoorida with regard to i.d. or the reduction of our people are allowed to cast a ballot? in who we aretent as a people. we should be encouraging people to vote, expand that number of
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and i think the congress forhelp in allocating money grants to somehow encourage the states to keep polls open longer and make registration easier so that we have more people in the process as opposed to fewer. american way, to do anything other. it resulted in the civil rights movement and we have seen what it means to keep people away from the polls. it's not something we want to go back to. >> one of the things i have noticed is that we have always had it on tuesdays, hysterically. is there anything by statute
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that requires us to be on a tuesday? is that something we can look at as modifying since there were democracies usually have two days and they declare a non-work days so it gives people the ability to get out there and vote. is there something i don't understand about this designation? >> it has a lot to do with the way our society was configured many years ago, an agrarian society. , but wewas a great day are in a different era and i think some of the things states are doing with regard to expanding voting ability to weekends makes a lot of sense. people have to work on tuesday. they're not bringing crops from the field into a place where they can vote.
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hours, those are all things we should be encouraging. >> thank you. one last thing. the story was revealed, it's been more than any year since the department of justice committed to doing an i have asked if- -- e would be some updates you found it disturbing and said these things are under review by your department. can you give us an update? >> those items, the stop and frisk policy, those are still things under review. there is a civil lawsuit that
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has been filed by a separate set of plaintiffs and we are still cleaning information from that lawsuit. are mattersings that are under review in the department. >> it is under review? it does not feel like there is progress. if there is a lawsuit, you wait and see where are there other things that are more proactive that can be done or are being contemplated? >> i think it is both. there are certain things the department can do, but this department is important as there is information and we get a sense of policies that have raised concerns in the minds of many people. that will help determine the direction the department will ultimately take. >> in my district, there was an
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incident where an agent had placed a monitoring device underneath a young man's car to trace the person's movements and there was no explanation. is that a practice that is still practiceor is that a deemed to be halted because it is unconstitutional? i'm curious what the department's mandates are on that kind of behavior by agents? >> that is a technique still used by the department. the supreme court says it constitutes a search, so we changed our policy so when that technique is used, warrants are now sought as opposed to doing it without the involvement of the courts. --and they were sought fire
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they sought to file the action? >> thank you, mr. chairman. mr. attorney general, wanted to ask a line of questioning based on a letter written to your office from our chairman with regard to the fort hood shootings. it was dated march 15, 2014 and they have not received a response as of yet. i wanted to delve into this a little bit if i could. i one to raise a line from the letter from a former colleague of ours who is now the secretary of the army. he was interviewed in a nightline report saying "
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awarding purple hearts could affect the trial. to award a purple heart, it has to be done by a foreign terrorist elements. -- to declare a soldier a foreign terrorist, we are told, and not an attorney and i don't run the justice department, but we were told it would have a profound effect on the ability to conduct the trial. of where i basis want to go with my line of questioning. the issues are on workplace violence verses acts of terror, whether or not victims would receive a purple heart and why and how it might taint that trial. and your role in this because he that itally implies
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justice department here has some overview of your budget request. i want to preference by saying i served at fort hood. my son was born five days before 9/11 and i'm familiar with the up-tempo nature of that post. we had two divisions there. highly sought -- a highly stressful environment and that was a young captain there a few years back. is somewhat personal. i prosecuted cases in the prosecutor,know the i knew the former defense attorney very well. somet want to get to clarity on this issue which i think the victims there
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certainly deserve. if yout question is, could keep these answers as much as possible to yes or no so i can get through as many as possible, did department of defense officials consult you or members of your department to designate the attack on military and civilian personnel at fort hood as an act of work -- act of workplace violence? just not familiar with what interaction you have had with the department of defense with regard to this issue. a gentleman being prosecuted by the department of defense, correct? >> not the department of justice. record can be clear, jn is a former republican in the house serving in the obama administration.
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this is a military procedure in terms of the trial of this gentleman and i want to make sure the record is clear -- the gentleman is a great member and it's not something that department justice's handling. >> i appreciate that. the only reason i bring it up is that it was in this interview that i'm not an attorney and i don't run the justice department, but we are told the purple heart award would have a profound effect on the ability to conduct a fair trial. secretary of the the army implies the justice department has some involvement here. that's what i'm asking. if your answer is no, we can certainly move on. >> as far as i know, the decision to award purple hearts was not influenced by anything the justice department said. to the extent we have had interaction with the defense department, i will relay that to
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you, but but the congressman has said is correct. this is a military prosecution and does not involve the justice department. we're clearly not involved in making purpleheart determinations. i willave had anything, share it, but i'm not aware of anything. >> i have the letter. i just pulled out. i'm not an attorney, don't run the justice department -- and i think he is right, before they did anything, they led to the justice department and the administration has treated these people very poorly. is unless he misspoke, they go to justice before anything. >> are you aware what person in the administration made the call to deem that a work place violence incident? >> i am not aware.
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>> if i could, i just want to continue on -- these are going to be no, that i and understand. i want to continue on with the line of questioning. can you recall any case in your role as the attorney general where a case was tried as a workplace violence in which the perpetrator had a prior fbi document in connection to add al qaeda leader and then went on to murder 13 people? is that something you have ever seen before deemed workplace violence? >> i'm not familiar with the situation. agree he isthat you a terrorist since we killed him in yemen?
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>> he was a terrorist. >> the relationship between him is wellhassan documented. are you familiar with that? >> yes. >> it went into excruciating detail about what we knew and what we didn't know or should have known and what we neglected to act on. following the fort hood attacked on members of our military, was any terrorism or prosecutorial authorities sought from the national security division? foranybody get with you guidance to see if you were going to be prosecuting this case? >> i don't know. we will have to look in that. i just don't know the answer. >> you don't know if it was
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approved or denied? >> i don't know. if you are not aware of a lot of this stuff, what i'm about to ask is one of the things that confused me when i was preparing my line of questioning for today and the inference that the justice department had some role and we were worried about tainting the trial, which i get, remembering a comment you had ksm beinge past about brought here -- i don't know if you used the term slam dunk, but it was we have every confidence his conviction will be a foregone conclusion. i thought it was interesting because he had yet to go through trial and yet there could be a taint issue there. to worry about there being an issue with this case, and labeling it workplace violence
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as opposed to an act of terror, i could not jive those two. if you are saying to our ofmittee you are not aware him as saying there was an interaction between department of defense and you on this case, i guess it is moot. >> i'm just not aware about that. ksm, i never used any thing to that effect. >> somebody did. i remember thinking it was interesting that we were basically patting ourselves on the back that the new york district court was going to have a conviction no matter what and we haven't even got there yet. that's completely irrelevant to what i'm trying to get at. could you explain to me what
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your department's protocol is now if a member of our military was to send multiple e-mail's to an individual of a terror watch list, attempting to financially support a known terrorist -- what is your known protocol? >> if anyone was sending material or doing things that would support a designated terrorist organization, that would violate the materials support statute and the case could be brought. >> even if it is someone in the military? >> the interaction of the justice department defense department in that regard is something we have to work out. that's one of the problems we're having with the military commission, the ability to bring the materials support charge in a military setting is not something that is clear. it's going to have to work its way through the courts. how the case would be handled this something we will have to work our way through.
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but i would think the first instance, if a member of the military is doing something that violates the law, those things and that on the military side as opposed to the civilian side. i want to bring you back to be subcommittee that held an investigatory committee hearing that concluded the fbi's failure or refusal to tell the army 's al qaedan connections led to the fort hood attack. i just want to recognize our sergeant who still has two bullets in his body and sergeant once heard who was shot six times, as well as one of the . dows i just want to apologize on behalf of the government for failing and that the president
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said when he met with you down at fort hood that you would be taken care of. whether or not we get to the bottom of is this an act of workplace violence or an act of terror, and whether you are owed your purple hearts like the people killed in the pentagon on be1 or not, so that you can properly treated is something i'm going to commit myself to and i know the chairman will as well, which is why we sent the letter. not meant as any disrespect. i have a responsibility not only to my constituents, but to the people who served on a post that is near and dear to my heart to try to get to the bottom of it. chairman, -- i just want to end with one question and this is completely
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hypothetical and you might not be able to answer this. nadal uming calling hassan a terrorist would in fact take the trial and make the panel in a court-martial see him adversely and go against our judicial principles, so would not call it an act of terror, we would not entertain giving these guys purple hearts because we were worried about tainting that trial, do you have an opinion as to after the trial, if he is found guilty of these murders and attempted murders, after he is found guilty, do you have an opinion of whether or not we can then label it as an act of terror so that purpleheart can be awarded? >> let me just say with regard to the people you have
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recognized, i want to thank them for their service and they have my sympathy for the losses they have had to endure. with regard to the question you put to me, this is something is it that -- that i think is more properly on the side of the defense department. history will judge him after the trial. it depends on how the trial turns out. with regard to the designation, we're talking about something that's a technicality that has to do with how the military would make that assessment as opposed to me as attorney general on the civilian side. even ifld appreciate you can't answer the question posed to you, if you could respond in like fashion as you have to the questions i have proposed, i would appreciate the answers as best as you can answer them. i appreciate that -- i just
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found that today, a lady came by from my district -- with the people from fort hood stand? our government has treated them poorly. this is another thing, mr. attorney general, why should i write you a letter? you should have known this -- they are passing you notes left and right on every issue, you would have thought somebody would have told you somebody who served in congress sent you a letter. you have had this letter for a month and a half its an issue of such importance for men and women who have served the country. wasn't involved. what i'm going to ask you here is would you send one of your people up next week to sit down with mr. rooney and tell us we were involved or we were involved because you don't seem
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to know the answer. when you send someone up and sit down with mr. rooney -- >> we will look at the letter and respond to it? >> we are never getting responses. once you get out of here, you are gone. we may never see you again. it will be no response. you never respond. will you commit to mr. ready to send someone up? i see whispering back their back and forth. meetyou send someone up to with mr. rooney next week? yes or no? >> hite -- we need to better you send it- can someone up to talk to them? >> i don't know what it means -- i don't know what the nature of
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this issue is. towill do the best we can answer questions. put this iny to perspective. if i say to someone, i'm not a member of the republican party, but however, that doesn't mean you go to the republican party and say what do you have to do with it. he says -- in doesn't mean the department of justice -- we can't go running off a cliff here on an inference. let's just start there. you have the commander in chief who is in military chain of command and you have a military trial going on. the gentleman, mr. rooney, was a jag officer. he knows the president of the united states cannot disclose a view on the trial, to say it was a terrorist act, while you have a military tribunal going on, that would be improper.
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you have a trial going on and i think it may have been taking place at a workplace but this involved in a terrorist act. this is a military trial and we're talking about the civilian department of justice. we're taking an inference about a former republican member of congress to any one of us could call up and say what did you meet? then we dragged the attorney general and here and the man he answer questions about something he had no involvement with as far as he knows, right? >> right. >> i think it does a disservice in this matter. we should seriously pursue it with the people made the decision. the department of defense made the decision and may have made for a very good reason, maybe to further the effective prosecution of the gentleman who did this, number-one. and in terms of other matters that might have to come in
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sequence to a final decision in the court, it may be appropriate to proceed even if emotions are high about the matter. we have a government of laws and we have to proceed under the rule of law. i appreciate everything that has been set but there's no reason to believe when john made this very interesting statement that he was actually saying the department of justice -- >> will the gentleman yield? >> >> that's exactly the point of the line of questioning. there was an inference made. maybe i should have called mchugh directly but when that inference was made and we were going to have the attorney general testify here today, i think it's important that if there was coordination between d.o.d. and the justice department on how this case was going to move forward and how it was going to be handled, that it would be fair to ask the attorney general, in what exsity is that going on? he's answered those questions
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but i think the people standing in the back of the room deserve to at least try to get to the bottom of it and if you don't have the answers to these questions, you done have the answers to these questions. and if it's mr importantly in d. -- more appropriately in d.o.d., then we'll go there next. ae secretary of the army made statement. there's a guy in this room who has to have -- who has a bullet in the body -- in his body that needs to be remove bud can't because under his benefits it's not a combat bullet. so we need to figure out what we're doing here. i need to know why we have workplace violence versus act of terror so these guys can get the care they need so if he's found guilty, can it be found a -- an
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act of terror. >> i would be happy to work with you, get the secretary of the army down here to work with you to get some answers. >> that would be fabulous. >> but i have to go back to this, i agree with my friend from philadelphia, mr. fatah. the fact is, you can come up and say whatever the pact is the department of justice investigated this case, your department investigated this case. the justice department investigated this case. it was not the secretary of the army that investigated it, you and your department investigated it. so what i'm asking you, out of respect for these men and women, 13 that gave their life, who paid the ultimate price, this young lady here, i found out today what is your name, ma'am? angela. she just moved from my congressional district -- moved to my congressional district, i
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will work with them, if no one was there, say, no one here was but i'm asking you on the record, on behalf of the people who serve this country, 13 who gave their life, will you send someone up from the justice department next week and mr. fatah should be there and i will come and mr. rooney wants me to come to say what the involvement was, whether you were, not you, whether justice was or was not involved. yes or no. >> we'll do the best we can but i'm saying to you, you're asking me to make a pledge. >> just to come up and meet with them. >> what would be the purpose of coming up if i was not in the position to share information. i'm saying we need to acquire information. that's what i'm saying. i pledge to answer the questions in that letter as best we can, as quickly as we can. >> but mr. -- >> you know, we have -- >> for the very fact that you will not send someone up to meet
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with mr. rooney a member of the committee who has served in the military who has been down to fort hood who is advocating for the families -- >> i wouldn't commit to doing it by next week. >> how about in two weeks. >> i will pledge to you -- >> three weeks. >> when we acquire the information we'll come up and talk to you -- >> by? >> as soon as we can. >> by the end of may? >> as soon as we can. i'm not going to do any better than that. that's the best i can do for you. >> the american people watching this, they know their taxpayer dollars are going to a justice department that can't send someone up, when i have looked at the investigation, the activity that took place with perez and some of those activities and you can't send someone up, we'll send someone down to pick them up and drive them up -- >> will you yield for a minute? >> i will not yield. i will not yield because i found
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that this lady lives in my congressional district, and they deserve this. if you can't do it by the end of may that's ridiculous. >> the attorney general said he would look into this an he will get back expeditiously. he's represented to us, it will take time for him to get the information. he could come here next week and say i haven't had time to get the information you need, there would be little point in occupying the attorney general in the midst -- in the wake of what's going on in boston and everything else right now, having him come back on an everyitier rand. i would rather we had the feedback of the department when they come back and give us a substantive answer. he said he will do that as soon as he can. he is a man of his word and i think we should accept that and i yield back. >> will the gentleman yields? >> mr. attorney general, could you send out a request to your department and ask, did anyone in the department of justice
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consult with the department of defense. you can rest assured that leaving here today and on the ride back to the justice department, i'll be asking that uestion. i don't want to put myself in position as mr. schiff indicate wrd i can't answer. i don't want to pledge something i can't confirm. i don't want to put myself and -- >> when you ask questions of your employees, they generally answer pretty quickly? >> generally. but they don't know all time. >> certainly by the opened of may you will know the answer to that question? >> probably. >> and you could -- we'll be in a position to answer the question, the question is time. >> will you give the gentleman a
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commitment. >> with your permission, i think both of us will come. >> absolutely. > thank you, mr. chairman. >> i think the gentleman has legitimate concerns but like mr. schiff i also heard, in spite of the emotions involved and rightfully so, i heard a determination by a lot of people to get to the bottom of this and resolve it. i heard it from the ranking member and from the chairman and from the attorney general. and i think it will happen and whether it's a matter of picking a date or a time, it takes a
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little longer than that, it has to be. but i don't think it will just go undealt with, if you will, for the next few days. or months. so i'm satisfied with that. attorney general, first of all, when we say that our prayers go out to the people of boston, that is true and correct, we want you to know that our prayers and thoughts are with law enforcement also, because how quickly they move is important but they're also in danger in many ways. it's a global desire for peace and for understanding and we commend you for your work and the work of the department. just picking up very briefly, before i make the statement that i want to make to you, on the issue of the stop and frisk policy, you said that it's also -- there's a lawsuit going on
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and you want to wait on that. there are folks in new york and other places who are looking for the justice department to say something about the stop and frisk. so what's the purpose of waiting after the trial, the trial itself may make the statement, so at what point is it the role of the justice department to make a statement on this issue? >> it's dependent on what happens in the course of the trial or the results of that trial. it seems to me there are data this will help us make data points as to what our ultimate action will be. but what we do, we the observations we have are independent of what happens in that trial. >> thank you. just very briefly also, we understand that there's a long
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overdue program for immigration review which deals with the population of children in the system. as we deal with comprehensive immigration reform, there are a lot of piece there is that folks will get to know and one of the things that happens is what happens to people in the system already, deportation, children that are being deft behind, parents that are being deported. what do you see as the future and resources available for that kind of a program to protect children as we move to protect other children such as the dream act children? >> i think, i want to make sure i have the number here's, but that's obviously something we look at o, we tried to the situations where people find themselves in the immigration system and extend to the extent we can the right to council so people -- to the right to
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counsel, so people in a life-changing decision, are adequately represented. we believe, i guess we have a $4 million enhancement that we think will assist us in making sure that children do not face these kinds of proceedings alone. so i think the concern that you have raised is a very legitimate one. we have focused a lot on children's issues since i have been attorney general and as we are rooking -- we are looking at reforming, redoing our immigration system, i think we have to look at, in a way we have not before, who comes into the system and how they are being treated and adequate representation is, i think, the cornerstone to any adequate -- it leads to a good system. >> mr. attorney general, i want to make basically a statement, if you wish to comment on it, you can, but i understand if you can't comment at this point i
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understand. in 189 , puerto rico became part of the united states new york 1917, puerto ricans were made american citizens, in 1990, for what it's worth, i became a member of congress. since that time and prior to that time, -- >> are you equating each of those things? >> i said for what it's worth, but there was a direct result of all those things happening. and all the time that you've been attorney general even before that, you know of my concern. we just wanted to thank the department for including $2.5 million in funding to conduct voter education and help resolve puerto rico's future relationship with the united states this funding is an important step to me and to millions of puerto ricans in puerto rico and the 50 states in defining a process that will allow puerto rico to truly determine the constitutional relationship that they want to have with the united states. this language is an important
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response to a valid question that was -- to a ballot question that was on the ballot in puerto rico last november, whether the people of puerto rico wanted to remain in their current status or change to something different. pee puerto rican people on that day clearly voted for change this funding is the logical next step in that process. i don't know how the department plans to implement its responsibilities as it moves forward through this process but please know you have the support on this initiative and i've spoken to the chairman and the full committee and the commirm of the subcommittee and after 115 years, it is time to resolve the political status of puerto rico. it's of great interest, as i said, to the four million who live on the island and the four million plus who live throughout the 50 states and if you care to comment on what the process would be and what you hope to accomplish at the end, i'd preesh it. >> under the budget request of $2 ppt 5 billion it's going to
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work with the state election committee, our role is limited to reviewing the plan and determining whether it's compatible with the constitution and laws of the united states. but the administration is committed to the principle that political status is a matter of self-determination and the president's budget proposal reflects his commitment to work with congress to provide a mechanism for the people of puerto rico to decide their own fate. that is our view. >> we thank you. we thank you for that comment, mr. attorney general, and we hope that we can work together as a nation if you will, to resolve this issue. once again, i thank you for your service. thank you, mr. chairman. >> dr. harris. >> thank you very much. thank you for appearing this afternoon. i have just two brief areas of question, then i'll dive a little better into the medical marijuana issue. first of all, i wasn't going to ask this one until i read "the wall street journal" this morning where the department is the subject of an article and
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the lead editorial discussing one of your officials, mr. perez, and his actions at the department. and i won't get into the whole business about it but i will ask you, do you agree that the quid pro quo deal arranged in that is an appropriate ethical way to deal with those cases? and did you have involvement in the decision of the quid pro quoness of that deal. >> the use of the term quid pro quo, i'm assuming you use that in a neutral way. >> purely technical way. enge there's fair evidence that the decision was made to drop the support for the two other cases in return for the dropped prosecution for the -- for the ropped magnar involvement. my understanding is ethics was consulted and -- do you agree with that? >> i think the actions the united states took in that case were appropriate and in the best interests of the people, the taxpayers of our country, the
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citizens of this country. as yo point out, i think it's very important, ethics people were contacted, the office of professional responsibility was contacted as well. i'm sure that the secretary of labor designee indicated the same. >> sure. let me just ask, a brief followup on that even though everything was appropriate it appears there may have been actions to make it less obvious to the observer that this is what was going on with regards to emails that said, don't connect those two in an official commune keags. what's more troubling and my specific question is, the question about use of a personal email system to communicate with the lead attorney in st. paul by mr. perez. you know, we've had the e.p.a. administrator use the dog's name for an email system, i was chairman of the subcommittee
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looking into some of these issues, and we didn't know to subpoena the dog's email. we weren't getting anns back. it appeared as if a personal email account was used for communication between mr. perez and the attorney in st. paul. the interesting thick is that there was a subpoena issued by the oversight committee and the justice department spokesman's quote was, we have been cooperating and will continue to cooperate with legitimate oversight requests because mr. perez has resisted agreeing with t. is that a legitimate oversight, subpoena for personal emails, when a personal email system may have been used potentially to avoid the -- obtaining of records under federal law. the reason i lean -- >> the reason i lean back, i want to make sure what i'm about to say is correct.
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the relevant material was provided so that the information can be examine -- examined, can be reviewed and determinations made about that. >> your feeling is that the subpoena was not a legitimate oversight request. >> the subpoena that the -- the subpoena that was not complied with. >> the personal email information was provided after witnesses testimony. >> then you claim that the what was reported today was incorrect, that mr. perez is not complying with that request, you are saying he did comply with the request and you believe that's appropriate to comply with that request. >> my understanding that the information was, the personal email information was provided yesterday. >> was provided yesterday. i appreciate that answer.
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let's talk about the system, i'm going to follow mr. schiff, follow up a little bit on what he brought up. the president used very strong language, he qused the word lie, you can disagrea with someone's, you know, positions and someone's advocacy but using the word lie i'm a little worried about. some of the things said about the system, i have said. so i'm just going to delve into a little bit. before we expand she system in general i want to ask, is the current program effective and is it enforced? i'm going to briefly teal with these two. in terms of effectiveness, you are aware in the state of maryland, the last figures i have is from 2011, i'll ask to get the most updated figures from maryland. there were only 61 records in the nix system, five felons and 6 people of mental health. so only 61 people in the whole
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state of maryland rejected under a nix inquiry in 2011. that means a person and i believe i've been in the prison, we have more than five felons, that means only 61 people will be denied going into a store today, picking up a military rifle off the rack, standard issue world war ii military rifle off the rack, call the background check and be denied because there are only 61 records in the whole system. is that an effective system? do you really think the people of maryland, that we should be just ex-panting a system which is -- as mr. schiff brought up and you probably realize, 33 states have no entries for drug abuse. -- drug abuseties qualification. zero entries for drug abuse. many states, zero entries for mental health. which was the only thing that would have prevented some of these tragedies. what i'm getting at has to do with appropriations.
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we have spent hundreds of millions of dollars on these programs, hundreds of millions of dollars in grants going to states to get this data into the system. and actually i think by your testimony that i couldn't draw it out in the written testimony, it appears you may have actually asked for more money than that next year. we spent hundreds of millions of dollars and don't have a system where states are prereporting things. we're going to represent to the american people this hope that we just expand and make et universal, the world will be great but in fact the system is full of holes. it has a lot of flaws. can you address that? when you come in those programs, all i'm dwinggoing ask, please address those glaring problems and make the states follow up. maryland has taken $10 million over the cases, to report 61 cases. i could get more cases reported
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walking through jessup prison and take the names of the felons in there. i could get more in one day. but let me talk about enforcement because mr. attorney general in the year 2010, the last year that we have extensive rords for, 67,000 denials under nix and you know these figures, 34,000 were felons, 13,000 fugitives, there were 13 convictions. 62 were referred for charges by a.t.f. 62 out of 6,000 denials, ok, and a denial someone came in, claimed they could buy a firearm and really couldn't and therefore committed a federal crime doing it. 62 charges referred, 13 convictions. eight in indiana. so you probably have some rogue
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prosecutors in indiana who didn't get the feeling from the department that you're not supposed to prosecute these cases. the i.g. if the department testified in front of the committee, his impression is it's low priority in the department. u.s. attorneys just don't prosecute people who violate the background check law. please tell me, please tell me, that's not coming from the department. that you want to prosecute every one of those 3,000 fugitives who had the nerve to go and attempt to buy a gun as a fugitive from justice, got turned down, and were never prosecuted. tell me that's not the official department policy. >> you put a lot into that question. since the system started, two million people have been turned away who tried to buy a gun and came into conflict with the next system. the -- with the nix system.
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the system should have been expanded in that senate vote taken yesterday and it could be made better which is one of the reasons we had in our budget request money so we could fund ways, so the system became more inclusive and had more information in it. there are certainly places where the amount of information provided by the states is inadequate and we need to take steps to try to remedy that situation. there's no question, i think, that the system as -- that the system as it is designed technically works and the question i had for the opponents of that, if you think it is a system that works, ok, it's an imperfect system that needs to be made better, why not expand it to gun shows and people who buy guns over the internet? why would you not do that? why would you not? and that for me is a question that's never really been adequately answered.
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we brought, i think, a total of 85,000 cases last year, the last fiscal year, there were 83 thourblings denials, i believe, last year. we have to be judicious in how we use resources. we can't prosecute every person who is denied a gun, we don't have the resources. 83,000 denials, 85,000 cases in total. so we have to make the determinations and what we try to do is focus on the people who are most dangerous people who if they did get a weapon inappropriately are most likely to do something bad, harmful. >> so is your testimony that in only, r 2010, there were because there were only 62 charges referred, there were only 6 people dangerous enough if they got a weapon that you felt they should have been -- your department makes all these determinations of referring
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charges, all that is in your department. there were only 62 dangerous enough? because the allegations that we save two million -- we kept the guns out of the hands of two million dangerous people, but the fact is that we denied 76,000 but you're going to have to tell me, did we only refer 62 because they were the only dangerous ones or did we refer 62 because it's just not a priority? because your testimony was, we're going to take -- we're going to refer the ones that are dangerous. only 62 in the year? >> i don't know -- >> that's not a background check that works if only 62 people were denied guns. >> there's a couple of things you have to understand. the system does work, those people did not get guns. that's part one. >> will you let the gentleman answer the question, please. >> part two, what you're talking about, i think we ought to agree on that the system is effective
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in the sense that what i call part one now, people who shouldn't get guns don't get them. part two about what we should do with those people who are -- who try to get guns and are not prosecuted, yeah, the numbers perhaps ought to be a little higher, i don't know. we have to look at if you have the number of 6 and you have 76,000, i'm not sure what the number was you used that seems like a glaring difference. you have to understand, were they paper violations? what was the nature of the problem. not everyone who was denied a gun was dangerous. there are a bunch of reasons people can't -- >> that's exactly my point that we say, we kept guns out of the hands of two million people, they were not only that dangerous. but i want to move on -- >> there were a host of people who if they had gotten guns undoubtedly would have done things that were harmful to their fellow citizens -- >> but not bad enough to prosecute. let me move on.
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the medical marijuana, look, i'm a physician, if i tell people there's only one federal license i've held for 30 years, my d.e.a. license. the federal government has deemed that it's so important to control that for the health of people in the united states that we're actually going to create the d.e.a., we're going to enforce those laws. so we have the administrationor in -- administrator in and you heard, there's evidence that drugs are dangerous that -- especially for children, they lead to permanent changes in i.q., permanent changes in health, augmenting mental illness, increase accidents and injuries, they're dangerous. and you did indicate that the president did not say that he was for legalizing marijuana. but more importantly, the president didn't say he was against it. so here you have the d.e.a. under -- a schedule one drug, no
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medical use, clearly illegal and the president not taking a position against what happened in washington, what happened in colorado and my specific question is, is it because of the supremacy clause of the constitution and the ability to preempt it, it's clear from some of the case law, you couldn't overturn local laws and state laws urn medical marijuana but we've crossed a threshold now, washington and colorado crossed a threshold, a threshold that was -- that appears perhaps pretty clear in a couple of the cases, in a couple of the rulings, that there is a possibility to go in, if we felt, and the justice department agreed, that marijuana is dangerous and it deserves a schedule one classification, that we could -- your department could choose to overturn those laws on the -- under the
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obstacle element of the conflict pre-etchings, they can send a clear message to the state, we're going to draw the line at medical marijuana and maybe there are cases where, we're just not going to go there, but we are going to send a clear message to america's youth that marijuana is not a safe drug, it is illegal, and it's going to be dealt with under the controlled substance act and we are going to send that national message. is that possible? is that among the rem of possibilities under consideration that the justice department could draw that line and send that clear message? or are we going to have the message -- i guess you know, it's not a clear message to american kids. you say, i don't know if it's bad, i don't know if i'm against it, that's not a clear message.
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've got five kids, i've got as many as you and the president combined, kids need clear messages an i'm afraid we're not sending them one. would that send a clear message is that something you'd consider, taking the two states to court and saying we're going to ask for a ruling in a federal court on whether we preempt state law. >> then you get into something that's something we have under review, there are a number of factors i went through before we have to consider in making that determination. >> and what factor -- could you be more specific? we have c.r.s. has looked at this, in at least two reports. it's been six months since november occurred, these programs are gearing up in those two states. i mean -- do you agree with me that an argument could be made
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, forre-emples -- preefplgs conflict pre-emption, that a line has been crossed and those states are clearly in contradistinction to the c.s.a.? could that case be made? >> that case could be made with regard to at least part after the statutes. these are the things we have to take into consideration. what kind of case could we bring? the strength of the case, the ability to pry -- would the ability to try to preempt try to apply to all those statutes. those are the determinations we have to make. >> who is going to make that determination. >> i will be making that determination. >> and the time frame of that? because children are dying from drugs. it is a scourge. and as the administrator made clear, marijuana is a gateway drug, its use in teenagers is dangerous and we are sending a very mixed message.
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can you give me an idea, i'm not going to rehash the timeline argument that went on before, can you give me a general idea of when that decision is going to be made. >> let me first say this when it comes to protecting children and making sure that children don't die, when it comes to drug use or anything else, i am really proud of what this department of justice has done over the last four and a half years, we have put front and center the welfare of our children. it has been something i've been personally committed to. so the decision that we make will be consistent with the policies that we have put in place with regard to the welfare of our children. there will be no tension in that regard. >> i didn't hear the -- my question, what is the time frame for that decision? what will be done about the federal preemption question over washington and colorado's
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actions that are in pretty clear contradiction to the c.s.a.? >> we're going to make that decision as quickly as we can. >> can you be any more specific than that? >> no. >> fall, winter? >> no. >> no. since the answer is no to that, i'm just going to ask, mr. chairman, just for another minute because then i have to ask, what are the plans to enforce the laws in those states while you're deciding whether or not to actually go to court and strike down the law under federal preemption? what -- -- >> our enforcement efforts remain the same as they always have been. they are policy guides we have given the u.s. attorneys from i guess two deputies attorney yens who served under me as far as how we use justice department -- >> you're referring to the ogden
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and cole memorandums. they referred to medical marijuana. i'm not talking about medical marijuana i'm talking -- >> will you let the gentleman answer. >> they refer to medical marijuana but you can glean from those what theus tits department is with regard to how resources should be used in the field. there are things that are more generic that go beyond medical marijuana. >> and what about the officials who now under the question of authorizing activity, instead of just approving activities, those statutes are found to on stain authorization, do you intend to pursue action against the officials who authorize it? that was not covered in those memorandum. >> these are determinations, we're looking at a new set of initiatives, statutes that have been passed by these two states and those derlingses have yet to be made by us. we will do that as quickly as we
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can. >> thank you very much, mr. chairman. >> mr. fatah. >> thank you, mr. chairman. i appreciate dr. harris' participation, i think he's been at every hearing. i was -- i enjoyed the fact that he was concerned about the president's language yesterday and the relationship to lying, he thought that was exceptional language, maybe he wasn't on the floor of the house when we had a member of the congress on the republican side of the aisle accuse the president of lying during the state of the union address because these sensitivities seem to arise in some kind of selective, maybe it's selective amnesia, we're concerned about it in one instance but not in another. if we want civility, we have to practice it. -- on his next system, this nix system, after the president's executive order, two and a half million new names
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have been added in recent weeks to this system, in my own state 600,000 names that have been withheld, these are people with mental health records that should have been in the system but the republican governor and our -- republican governor in our state wasn't compliant but has decided to turn these over. i think it's important to show that progress is being made to get names into the system and when you have 600,000 people who by law shouldn't be able to buy a gun having them in a system that would prevent them from buying a gun might be useful. but i want t.d. deal with another part of dr. harris' questions. he semis -- seems to suggest that every time someone is denied they have committed a crime and should be prosecuted. i don't believe that. if i've been involuntarily sent to a mental health institution, and i'm sure many of my constituents think some days i should be, that doesn't mean if i go to buy a gun and i'm denied
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that i committed a crime. the prohibition is against a gun seller from selling to a person who is in a restricted category is that correct? >> well, i mean, there are a number -- >> there are categories that are different but in the mental health category -- >> there are a number of ways that can be viewed and even for those people who actually technically commit -- and it can be in a nondangerous way, commit a crime, one has to ask how are we going to use the resources that we have? as i said, 3,000 denials a total of 85,000 prosecutions in the last fiscal year, i believe, we can't do all of those. we have to make determinations, which is not to say that the concern that dr. harris has raised is not inappropriate about the number of prosscuses. >> i think he's entirely appropriate when you talk about a demest exvibles perpetrator going to buy a gun that information should be passed along to local authorities
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immediately because they may not stop in their pursuit of this gun and we may have some sense of what the outcome may be if they're not stopped. i think if more can be done, one of the president's executive orders is to have more done in that regard. >> one of the things we asked for was for a federal trafficking statute for people who are going and buying guns, using -- with the intention of getting them and transmitting them to somebody who inappropriately gets -- legally should not possess them. >> it's unfortunate because there's bipartisan support in the house for a trafficking law and we should do something about it. but unfortunately, our political process doesn't seem to be able to arrive at a consensus yet that we want to protect the public from people who shouldn't have guns. they say it's not the guns system of the background check
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is to police the people, right? but the people who are saying we need to make sure the wrong people don't get guns are opposed to the background check. i want to say something positive as i conclude, i promised the champlee i would conclude quickly and i know you have to depart. i want to thank you for your leadership in the youth mentoring effort in our nation in support of the boys and girls clubs of america, the ymca's, i could list all the groups that have gotten a great deal of support and leadership from you, i think there's much more we need to do as a nation. the white house has indicated through one of its statistics that there are at least 10 million more young people who need to be connected to a legitimate mentoring effort so we can steer them in the right direction and that's the most important thing i think we can do as a country. i think it was the boys who once said, the minute there's a crime committed in the community, the community should turn its attention away from punishing the criminal to making sure that
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other young people don't follow in that path. i think that we've missed this point as a country that we spend so much focus on those who, on the planes that are crashing rather than the ones we want to land. we need to have some balance and i appreciate the leadership of your department. i thank the chairman for his diligence. he is the only chairman on the hill that doesn't use a time clock, so members get a chance to get to their point. i thank you, mr. chairman. >> thank you. i have 91 questions. i'm not going to ask them. they told me you have to leave at 4:15, i was prepared to stay at 6:30. what i would ask is that you take some time and answer the
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questions in writing. how long? >> for 91 questions? i don't know what the questions are. >> when can we expect a response. >> again i don't know what the questions, what it will entail -- >> forget, it -- forget it, forget it, i'll submit it to you. you know, i'm going to ignore you. we did the investigation, your civil rights division is a rat's nest, you have questions with regard to to that. i think you've been a failure with regard to the prison industries. you were a failure with regard to prison rape. senator kennedy, bobby scott and a group of us put together, took years to do that, more people were raped in that time. if you're not going to answer the questions, but you know, it's interesting, you want us to
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reprogram. we reprogram the money for you, the fact is people tell me, why are you going to reprogram that money for the attorney general? i said, i'm going to do it because i want to be helpful to the bureau of prisons. i want to do what's right. i don't want to be like some other people. now you're going to be coming back and asking for others. i'll try to help you there because i don't want to see you took money from the f.b.i. that doing critical work, but frankly, i'm not going to pay any attention to you because your positions with regard to the budget if you can't answer the questions you come up here, you were initially going to stay for the whole time, you're not going to answer the questions, we're not going to pay any attention to it. >> mr. chairman, no. mr. chairman, if you want me to stay, i'll stay. i will stay. >> this is an important meeting.
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>> that meeting will have to wait. if you want to ask more questions, let's go. >> sure, we'll get through the whole group then. they told me, mike what time did they say he had to leave. >> that's right, it's an important meeting. if you want me to stay, i'll stay. >> they told me it dealt with the boston issue. >> it does. >> that's an important issue, i wouldn't want you to miss it. >> i will say this, you said some things that i think are unfair with regard to the civil rights division and a lot of what the inspector general found in the civil rights division preceded my time as attorney general. we have taken steps to dry to -- to try to deal with the issues identified there and you know, with regard to the whole question of prison industries i have done as much as i could. i have been supportive of that, tried to work with you in that regard.
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that's consistent. i'm proud of what we've done across the board with the justice department, i'm proud of what i've done as attorney general. the department we have now is fundamentally different than the department i found when we got there. we don't hire people on the basis of political orientation, we don't do things as we have done in the previous administration, we don't write memos that say that torture is appropriate when dealing with interrogation techniques, i am very proud of my time as attorney general and i'm proud of the men and women who have served under me. >> it took you years to do the prison rape. the bureau of prisons, we have asked them to bring in programs with regard to work, there's been no effort and i would end with this, inspector genre porting on the voting section of the civil rights division documented inappropriate harassment and other unprofessional behavior including partisan and personal
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attack. your inspector general said this quote, reflects the disappointing lack of professionalism in an extended period of time, the last administration and your administration and across various sections of the operation. >> there's no question that work need to be -- needs to be done. >> are you going to bring an outside group in as we asked you to bring in? >> i think what the inspector general has done, there's an outsider a neutral person has looked at it and made the findings and that gives us a good basis for action. with regard to prix ark we did go beyond the time period werm given in the way congress went beyond the time frame it was given, that it gave toiths try to come up with the staff. we did the right thing with regard to it, we came up with regulations that are effective, we didn't come up with something that was half bake, we took the time, took the time to make sure
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that we we proposed -- >> when you say congress took too long. >> there were time frames that were in place before we got the measure that we were supposed to take that are blown through as well. we took the time we needed. we took the time that we needed. >> your language is drafted by senator kennedy and by congressman scott and senator sessions. and myself. and it will be a very good thing. i think the fact that you put a man in prison or a woman in prison and they're raped is unacceptable. >> i agree with you and we have done the right thing when it comes to priya. thank you.
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>> on the next "washington journal," the author of "the close -- closing of the american border" looks at the effects of the bombing in boston affects the immigration debate. then a discussion about federal and state health care exchanges with jenny gold of kaiser health news and the elimination of more than $40 million in tax breaks in oil and gas companies in the president's budget request. "washington journal" live at 7:00 a.m. eastern on c-span.
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>> the f-35 is the most expensive weapons system in the history of the united states. the history of mankind, quite frankly. it is an advanced warplane, fighter jet, that is to be used by the air force, the navy and the marine corps. it's the replacement for the f-16 for the air force, for a numb of other planers in marines and navy, supposed to be our new, advanced all-purpose fighter jet. it was a plan that was supposed to be in the skies fighting now. still in development. it's an incredibly troubled program. it's a program that's gone tens of billions of dollars over budget and i boar -- burrowed into this program as a way to write about the overall challenges of trimming the defense budget because this program is in some ways singular in terms of its cost overruns, its delays and the way it's been structured to, as i write in the
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piece, its most -- its most effective defensive attribute may not be all its radars and sensors and missiles and stealth technology and ability to fight superson -- fly at supersonic speeds, it may well be the way it's been designed to evade the budget cutters in washington. >> more of that on tonight's "q&a." >> katherine and timothy are second prize winners in the -span student cam competition. in their video, they ask the president to make deficit recovery a focus. >> we face a massive debt. >> we see a fiscal mess that affects us a all. >> the nation is on the road to bankruptcy. >> balance the federal budget
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now. >> it's a very big, political and policy decision. >> those create large and growing deficit into the future. >> we must reduce the deficit which is strangling our economic growth. >> you know, it would affect a lot of different people in a lot of different ways. >> there's change and then there's change. >> it's time we raise the bar. >> our economy is bad. >> i'm pretty sure it has to do with ethis economy and government. >> the debt. >> it's the debt in our country. >> deficit that we can't pay. >> i have no idea. >> although much of the younger
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generation is unaware of what the deficit is, it's still an prnt factor in the nation, the omy and our future. to feel . president, , the e country on track deficit should be the main focus. >> most of what we do is part of our preparation for a better future. it is truly important to us. >> in the united states the economy is a significant part of our society. buying, selling, trading, borrowing, using money fuel economic growth locally and nationalryly. it leads up to the stability of our future. >> the economy is the most important activity. when you buy stuff, when you go to work, when you go to school, when you buy a house, when you
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go to the bank to deposit money, it's all part of economic activity. >> however, the economy is recently weakening due to heavy deficits and debts affecting the nation. the federal deficit is at more than $1 trillion. a senior director of the bipartisan policy center said the debt has been accumulating so much the economy is at high risk. >> our debt is a percentage of g.d.p. in the last 30 or 40 years it's been less than 40%. it's only in recent years we've seen a decline. we are in dangerous territory. >> debra sullivan of the bloomberg view blames the shell-shocked u.s. economy. >> they say it's continuing to expand because of job loss, causing more spending on aid
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programs. >> we had large deficits for four years because we have low revenues as people don't have jobs, or they're getting paid less. but also we have these mandatory spending programs which go on auto pilot. unemployment, food stamps, medicaid, they spend more when he economy is bad. >> i think that the underlying issue of the financial crisis have not been fixed at all. indeed there's no easy fix. >> there are fix to consider. >> if we want to lift the cloud of deficits hanging over our country, we won't solve the problem of fiscal imbalance overnight. what we can do is avert the cliff in a manner that serves as a down payment on and catalyst for solutions enacted in 2013 to egin to solve the problem.
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>> you can reduce and then eliminate the deficit in a few ways, one is increasing the amount of revenue coming in through tax policy, or reduce the amount of expenditures by cutting back on expenses and spending. or some combination of those two. i believe that the most credible way, the most sustainable long-term way, is through what we call a balanced approach. >> john boehner, republican speaker of the house, emphasizes that cuts are the most important and effective way to solve the problem. >> republicans want to solve the problem by getting the spending line down. the chart depicts what i've been saying for a long time now. washington has a spending problem that can't be fixed with tax increases alone. if not, he wants to keep chasing
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higher spending with higher taxes, this chart will look a whole lot worse and our kids and grandkids are the ones who will suffer because washington was too short sighted to fix the problem. >> the younger generation will suffer from this issue in the future, and how. >> if we don't solve the national debt problem, eventually they're going to cut some of the resources. one resource that will be cut is education. >> we should investigation in education. it has to be a continuing priority. because number one, we owe it to the american people to make sure that each individual can obtain and attain their full potential. what we also need is a country to do it, it's important to allow people to pursue their dreams and achieve their potential. wethe kids will be affected,
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won't be able to provide good educations for our kids and they cannot get skills in order to get better jobs down the road able to pay t be income taxes, to get high paying jobs an pay higher taxes, that's a vicious seekle. >> if we don't have money, we won't be able to buy textbooks and supplies for our students. >> college seniors who graduated in 2009 carried on arch $24,000 in student loan debt, up 6% from 2008. >> it continues growing. student loan debt has climbed to an average of $27,000 nationwide. >> just how, if they don't go to college, how they're going to afford a place to live and in addition once they get out of college, how they're going to pay back these student loans
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that are so huge. >> i think everything is just up in the air, and nobody knows from year to year what's going toappe h unable to ation is support our future, how will we be able to support our own happiness and dreams. >> the economy supports the people. >> from small businesses and jobs and income. >> as a younger generation -- >> we hope to be a generation that creates a brighter future for our country. >> congratulations to our all winners in c-span's student cam competition. to see more, go to studentcam oirg. >> next, representative gutierrez. and then, al neuharth who died last week.
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and nbc senior political editor mark murray. >> this week on "newsmakers," luis fwueterres., member of the house judiciary committee and member of the so-called gang of eight working on immigration in the house. two reporters here to help us ith questions. from "the washington times" and the yarble journal. the first question -- >> you've been working with republicans and democrats in the house on an immigration proposal. can you tell us what is the same and what is different about your proposal from the proposal unveiled by the senate earlier this week. >> interesting, number one, i think the senate is headed in the right direction. i'm happy. they put the proposal forward. i look forward to working w